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Above: A memorial stone made by the author’s husband for the author’s all-time favorite pet rat.
East Lansing Info (ELi) prides itself on providing only factual, non-partisan content. As part of that, we prohibit editorializing in our articles. When we write and edit, we take special care to ask ourselves whether someone could reasonably see a word choice, a claim, or a presentation as opinion rather than fact.
Eighteen months into ELi’s life, we’ve decided to make one exception to this rule, and that is for pet obituaries.
ELi’s Managing Editor Ann Nichols and I are partial to animals. She can tell you that I often call for editorial meetings at her house just so I can hang out with her dogs Charlie and Gwen, as well as her cat Teddy, who clearly is the reincarnation of a very interesting person.
We have noticed that when a friend in East Lansing experiences the death of a pet, there is often no way for that person to feel witnessed, in spite of the fact that many of us are more bonded to our pets than certain human family members. We have also noticed that one of the great services provided by the Lansing State Journal is human obituaries.
So we are opening this new feature at ELi, Pet Obituaries, in which editorializing will be allowed, although only about the pet itself. (We won’t allow editorializing about leash laws, vet charges, or other issues that count as political.)
We will run one tomorrow—about a dog named Jackson—and we encourage you, if you live in East Lansing and lose (or have recently lost) a beloved pet, to submit a remembrance of your pet, along with a photo or two. Please include the birth year (if known), the death year, the species if it isn’t obvious from the photos or the text, and the basic facts of the animal’s life. Also include what neighborhood you live in.
And thanks, always, for your financial support of ELi as we work in East Lansing to build community, bridge gaps, and inform our City’s citizens.
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