The thing about John Wilke that was hardest to understand was how such hard-edged journalism could come from a man without a single hard edge in his personality. To my knowledge, nobody disliked Wilke, not even a little—and not even the people he poked in his stories. This in spite of the fact that he knew perfectly well how to be tough.
But, upon reflection, as I write this, it’s not so hard to understand after all. John was the most fair and honest reporter I ever dealt with. As his editor and his bureau chief, I never once got a call from anybody saying they had a grievance with the way John did a story. For somebody who did stories that dealt with such sensitive subjects, and that had such impact, that is a truly amazing thing.
It speaks volumes about John Wilke as a journalist. It speaks even more of him as a person. I hope he’s got the best box seats in the sky for every Red Sox game. He deserves them.