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A story with many parts

by   JUDY HODGSON

It started out to be a typical Tuesday, one year ago. We were preparing to go to press with a cover story on the struggle to save buildings in Eureka. ("Are these buildings historic or just plain old?") Along with our weekly arts and entertainment coverage, we had a number of shorter news reports in that edition as well: Yakima Inc. acquired new owners; the county STAR test results were released; a sheriff deputy announced that he would challenge his boss in the next election.

Small town stuff. But I wondered if anyone would even read the Journal that week of the terrorists' attacks.

This week we are focusing the entire news section of the Journal on Humboldt County a year after Sept. 11. The editorial staff divided up duties and began asking questions: How are things different? How are they unchanged?

Geoff Fein interviewed religious leaders and some business people, and he looked at safety and security issues. Bob Doran talked to artists and musicians. I spent some time at the Humboldt Bay National Wildlife Refuge and later interviewed Diqui LaPenta, fiancé of the late Richard J. Guadagno, refuge manager and one of the heroes of Flight 93. Andrew Edwards looked at how schools are preparing for the anniversary. He also talked to people on the street and looked into conspiracy theories.

Editor Keith Easthouse asked the big questions of those he interviewed such as why? and what happens next? and he was in charge of weaving all this material into one report.

It turns out it was unweavable. Each part is a story unto itself so the decision was made to present them as a package, a reflection of the events of Sept. 11.

 


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