Dave Cox would be embarrassed by this editorial.
He would say we are overreacting, that what we are going to say is too flowery and undeserved.
In his modesty, we can see him popping into that full-face smile of his, cocking his head a bit, holding his upturned palms at chest level and shrugging in that gee-whiz style we came to know.
Dave, a former editor of both the Terre Haute Star and later the Tribune-Star, was that kind of guy. He died Thursday at 61.
In the Tribune-Star newsroom, Dave was known for his intelligence, talent, work ethic and dedication to his readers. He was exemplary in all of those ways. He, as much as anyone, was responsible for bringing together two competing, post-strike news staffs (The Tribune, The Star) in the early 1980s as the papers changed ownership and, nearly immediately, merged into one newspaper.
It was Dave who designed and edited that first front page — Volume 1, No. 1 — of new The Tribune-Star on May 16, 1983.
It was Dave who sat on the news desk five nights a week, laying out the local pages, battling the deadlines, making news judgments at night and managing a staff. The rest of us always felt that the paper was in very good hands when Dave was in charge.
Dave was, yes, journalistically responsible, but more than that, he showed a community responsibility. He — unlike some of the rest of us — was Terre Haute-born and -bred, a proud son of Schulte High School. He knew the community’s history, sensibilities, strengths, weaknesses and personality better than most of us. The newsroom often listened well to what Dave had to advise about how to cover his community.
Among many other initiatives, it was Dave who created, designed, edited and kept alive a lively year-in-review section that ran for many years in the Tribune-Star — his annual contribution to recording the community’s history.
And it was Dave whose idea it was to start that popular old feature, “Today’s Smile,” which the paper displayed at the bottom left corner of page 1.
It is Dave whose fingerprints still can be found in this newspaper — how it tells stories, how it looks, how it tries to dedicate itself to the communities it serves.
When he left the Tribune-Star 14 years ago, the Sisters of Providence at St. Mary-of-the-Woods were lucky to obtain his services as media director. The Woods — both the Sisters and the college — were very special to Dave, whose grandfather and great-grandfather also had worked there. We know — as related movingly in a story in Saturday’s Tribune-Star — that Dave served that community as well and as faithfully as he served the communities of readers and colleagues.
With all his talent, Dave always brought a gentle spirit — quick to compliment, eager to say thanks or to forgive, hesitant to criticize, rare to anger.
In fact among the many positive things that can be said about Dave, the most positive are not comments reflecting on his work, but those reflecting on his life. Simply put, we have never known a more thoroughly decent man than Dave Cox.
To Dave’s devoted wife, Brenda, and to his two children and grandchildren — of whom he was immensely proud — we offer our condolences and our thanks for sharing him with us.
Thanks, Dave. Rest in peace, our friend.
Talented former editor served T-S readers well
Dave Cox would be embarrassed by this editorial.
EDITORIAL: Path set to overturn gay marriage ban
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EDITORIAL: Pondering the jail problem
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EDITORIAL: Get smart with 911
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EDITORIAL: Dealing with eroded trust
Our neighbors in Putnam County are understandably concerned, even outraged, over problems in their sheriff’s department. People have a right to expect their chief law-enforcement agency — one of the most important public institutions in any community — to operate professionally and effectively.
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EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news (Honors for outstanding women)
Honors for outstanding women
Sprucing up around the wetlands
You can say that again
Reader Poll results
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Graffiti hurts the Terre Haute community. It deflates property values and local pride. It literally paints an image of carelessness on the city.
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The Supreme Court has taken the predictable next step in the wake of its 2010 Citizens United decision in which it lifted the limit on donations wealthy donors can make to certain political entities.
EDITORIAL: Warm thoughts for Waltman
When Royce Waltman left Indiana State University as its head basketball coach in 2007, there was a sense of disappointment in the community that covered a broad spectrum.
EDITORIAL: Road work season requires motorists’ undivided attention
Spring’s budding flowers, trees and grasses are not the only colorful eye candy popping up on the west-central Indiana landscape. Those orange barrels and pylons common to construction areas are appearing as well.
EDITORIAL: Dangers lurking among us
Hardly a week goes by without multiple stories being published in this newspaper detailing the arrests, court proceedings, convictions or sentencings of individuals involved in sex crimes against children or young teens. It’s a disturbing trend that underscores the ever-present dangers that exist where we may least expect them.
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A couple of familiar faces in Terre Haute in the realm of public affairs are taking on new jobs, and we take the opportunity today to express confidence in their selections and best wishes for the future.
Editorial: Fast lane for road projects
Our interstate, national and state highways carry millions of people through and across Indiana each year. Those roadways form the physical connections among our communities.
EDITORIAL: A keen eye on ballots
Our governmental process has challenges at times, but it’s people like Margaret Taylor who make navigating the bumps in the road all worthwhile.
EDITORIAL: More jobs from Casey’s
Local politicians and public officials had been hinting that a major jobs-creation announcement for Vigo County would be made in early 2014.
EDITORIAL: Indiana 641 worth the wait
The fabled Indiana 641 bypass around the southeast side of Terre Haute has been a bit of a haunted project. Conceived in the late 1980s by visionary local transportation planners and approved by public officials in 1990, it’s hard to believe that today it remains incomplete.
EDITORIAL: New jail is right approach
It’s prudent that Vigo County’s governmental officials are reluctant to commit money toward an expert study of how to fix problems at our county jail — which is beset with inmate overcrowding, inefficient design, irreparable equipment and few good options for expanding.
EDITORIAL: Safety on scooters
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Vigo County’s voting process is undergoing a dramatic change this year. Voting centers are replacing precinct polling places, and a touch-screen electronic voting system replaces the pen-and-paper ballot. This represents long-overdue progress, a major advancement in the way people elect candidates for public office.
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EDITORIAL: Perfect place for pilot pre-K
National political experts closely watch Vigo County each presidential election.
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The largest and most influential bank in the two-state region centered in Terre Haute seems to have a historical affinity for years ending in the numeral 4.
EDITORIAL: Are you prepared?
Indiana is winding down its observance of Severe Weather Preparedness Week, a time set aside to remind us that volatile weather frequently accompanies the arrival of spring.
EDITORIAL: Calm before the storms
Spring, as the saying goes, has sprung. It happened Thursday, as the March breeze pushed temps into the 50s and set up what promises to be a spectacular day in the mid-60s today.
EDITORIAL: A place in the sun
This is Sunshine Week, named not for the approaching mild (and hopefully sunny) season of spring, but to promote openness and transparency in government at all levels.
EDITORIAL: Legal questions, legal answers
When the Republican-dominated Indiana General Assembly earlier this year passed a bill trying to amend the state constitution to ban same-sex marriage, many saw it as a small-minded, homophobic, even hateful attack on gay couples and a deprivation of civil rights under the constitution.
EDITORIAL: An event worth watching
Just across that invisible boundary between campus and city, knowledge, perspectives and — yes — opinions abound on topics of vital import to our lives in the 21st century.
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