On losing a great journalist and proud Haverford alumnus

The death of former Evening Sun editorial writer Jim Bready will be marked, as it should be, by appreciative memories of a journalist who captured with near perfect pitch the quirkiness of the city he loved.

It should also be noted that Haverford College — his alma mater, and mine — lost a devoted and loving son.

He adored Haverford. (Not that he shared all of the teachings of the Society of Friends. The Breadys' storied Christmas party, which was for many a vigorous celebration of the death of Prohibition, was proof of that.) But I always felt that Jim's values — his intellectual honesty, his gentleness in a brutal world and the attention he paid to those he saw as undervalued and unappreciated — were shaped in Haverford's Quaker teachings and, perhaps, in the silence of its Fifth Day Meeting.

Jim was Class of '39 and I was Class of '54, but because of the peculiarities of the five-year class reunion cycle our reunions coincided. I have a particular and poignant memory of Jim at one of the last reunions we attended together. Time, of course, had reduced the number of his classmates, and the picture I retain is of Jim, alone, poking at the campus' wondrous new additions but lovingly revisiting the library, Founders Hall and the duck pond, his haunts of decades before.

Jim was faithful in his support of the college. When Sheila and I hosted Haverford-centered events at our home, Jim and Mary usually attended. After each event, there arrived a letter from Jim. It was not a short "bread and butter" note but a very personal expression of gratitude and friendship. It reflected his deep love for the college. And it was written — how could it not be — with the "graceful lilt" and the "subtle sense of irony" that as others who knew and loved Jim Bready have recently reminded us, marked his work.

Stephen H. Sachs, Baltimore

The writer is a former Maryland Attorney General.

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