July 31, 2007

Today's Front Pages Analysis

Passing of 3 famous men passes as news everywhere

News of the deaths of former NFL coach Bill Walsh, former TV host Tom Snyder and film director Ingmar Bergman graced many front pages today. Walsh, the former coach of theSan Francisco 49ers, was heralded as a “Coach. Leader. Legend.” on the San Jose Mercury News front page. The Lawrence (Kan.) Journal-World had a straightforward headline about Snyder’s death: “‘Tomorrow’ host dies in San Francisco,” and Norrköpings Tidningar, a newspaper from Bergman’s home country of Sweden fills Page One with Bergman's likeness.

Although numerous pages covered one or more of the men, we would like to focus on papers that covered the loss of all three men on their front pages. The Salt Lake Tribune stated simply, “They Made a Difference” and showed photos of all three men. Texas' Austin American-Statesman says “Pioneers in film, sports, television are gone” and gives tidbits of information about each man, explaining “Who he was” and “What he’s best known for.”

The Daytona Beach (Fla.) News-Journal gave mini obituaries of each man on its front page, while The Philadelphia Inquirer started the full obituaries on the front page.

The Kansas City Star called the men “A winner … a legend … and a pioneer.” The St. Louis Post-Dispatch had the largest photos of all three men dubbing them “A football legend.” “A film genius.” and “A television pioneer.”

Finally, and succinctly, The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch said what we all were thinking: “Farewell to Three Greats.”

Emily Hedges is an assistant editor at the Newseum.

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