Mature Life Features

Cecil Scaglione, Editor

He Was a Buddy…

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    newspaper1REEVES, Gerry —  Worked for The Union, 1969-1979 as assistant city editor (day), county editor, state government writer, Chula Vista office bureau chief, writing fictitious rainfall figures. Doing a lot of photo and video work, some freelance PR projects. Very active in community theater publicity. Travel a lot. Contact: GeraldR5@aol.com; 1318 Pine Drive, El Cajon, CA 92020; (619) 447-2582

That’s how he described himself in the San Diego Union-Tribune alumni directory. He hired on a year before I did and left a year before I did.
We got to know each other covering the South Bay and each other’s back for a few years. When he moved downtown, he would bug me about moving there but we always agreed that the absence of editorial-room politics made the bureaus exceedingly attractive. It was his nudge to City Editor Walt MacArthur that got me to join the financial department with Don Bauder, Denise Carabet, Jim Mitchell, Helen Call and Mary Russell. Charlie Ross and Fred Muir came later. That hiatus taught me to embark on a public relations career to finance my retirement.
Gerry left the Union to become an editor in Tucson and then moved into public relations in Los Angeles before returning to San Diego to manage PR matters at Cubic Corp. Again, he was a booster. I was hired as a contractor and, as well as doing other jobs that cropped up with regularity, I was editor of the company’s in-house monthly magazine for several years. This contributed to the financial health of my PR agency — and my retirement.
We had breakfast/lunch a couple or three times a year. He suffered some severe medical problems over the years. Among them were lung cancer that required surgery, diabetes, and the last time we talked he was losing weight at an alarming rate and didn’t know what was causing it. He had a doctor’s appointment the following week to discuss it.
He didn’t spend much time talking about all that. He liked to expound the benefits of his latest toy — a camera or computer or whatever — and the latest developments with the acting troupe he was working with. We always talked about “the good old days and the good guys” and caught each other up on names and faces we had kept up with. Sometimes we’d wonder how politicians keep getting stupider and stupider.
We were due to nudge one another to set a date for our pre-Christmas brunch. But he died last Wednesday (Aug. 27) in San Diego’s VA Hospital.

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Written by Cecil Scaglione

September 2, 2014 at 7:28 am

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