Air Force brat, music critic at the Shreveport Times 1977-1991, military reporter there 1992-2012, local desk editor 2012-13 and from August through the end of October 2015 editorial page editor, at which time retired from Gannett. Now public information officer for the Caddo Parish Coroner and the Caddo Parish District Attorney. Co-author of a history of Barksdale Air Force Base, coauthor of a book on legendary locals of Shreveport and author of the centennial history of Forest Park Cemetery in Shreveport, La. Interested in genealogy since 1990, willing to visit Northwest Louisiana cemeteries. Fascinated by the stories of those in them, cognizant that people only pass from memory if we let them.
Unless there are historical or sentimental or research reasons disinclining me, I will transfer memorials per Find-a-Grave guidelines: "Memorials are transferred for direct relatives within four generations. This includes your spouse, siblings, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren." More distant relationships will not guarantee transfer and are decided on a case-by-case basis.
I worked for the Shreveport Times and Gannett Louisiana newspapers almost 40 years, and secured WRITTEN permission from the state publisher to use clips from the paper with proper attribution. WRITTEN permission. Bear in mind that a literal transcription of a newspaper item is JUST as much a copyright infringement as a scan, and lacks the provenance of a scan and introduces the ugly possibility of transcription errors. Plus anything 75 years or older is in the public domain and thus free from copyright.
The bottom line: Write the publisher of your local paper and request permission to post limited scans of obituaries and pertinent news stories WITH ATTRIBUTION. Newspapers are still the best source for such records and face dwindling subscriptions and diminishing public awareness. Posting on platforms such as Find-a-Grave can only benefit. GET THE PERMISSION IN WRITING and be prepared to argue your case with the gremlins above.
Finally, I have permission from the owner of Forest Park Cemeteries to take photos of memorials, almost always at the request of a fellow Find-a-Grave member. Due to a recent vicious rant from an angry family member -- the first complaint of this nature in the almost 18 years I have been a volunteer photographer -- I will remove photos of graves upon the request of people who can prove their relationship to the decedent within the four generations described above.
I am not responsible for the manner of death of a loved one -- suicide or murder for example -- or the public attention it may have garnered at the time.
You cannot change history; it changes us.
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