Kristie (Wittrup) Frein
Cindy Ramirez, El Paso
As Burt would expect, I'll be economical with words: My heart aches at Burt's passing, yet my soul smiles knowing how blessed I am to be among the many lives he touched.
I can only hope there's no typos, dangling modifiers or non-parallel sentences in heaven...
Make it sing, Burt!
Mrs. Wittrup, with greatest sympathies and much love,
One of your roses,
Burt Wittrup was my friend for 50 years. I met Burt when he came to work for The Associated Press, shortly after leaving the Navy. We were both working in the Albuquerque, NM bureau. Burt was Ka good friend. He was my oldest friend.
Good bye, old friend.
Merlyn & Jeanette Knudsen
Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
There will NEVER be another friend like Burt, Yes, he was a man of few words and he also had a heart of gold. He quickly became a member of our family and he was loved by each and every one of us. We were blessed to have known him. Burt was a loyal friend to my father and he will always have my respect and admiration for that. Friends like Burt are a rare find and when you find one you protect and cherish him. Burt, I know that you and my dad are in heaven, sitting at a table, drinking coffee and working on crossword puzzles. Our hearts are broken! Carolyn I know it won't be easy but I pray that God brings you healing and comfort. We love you Carolyn!!
Ed and I have known Burt since the 1960's, and we had never seen him happier, than after he married Carolyn.
Burt was a great friend to have, and will be greatly missed by everyone who ever knew him for he always left you with great memories.
I saw Burt as a person who lived a simple life with no fan fair, and one who enjoyed timing himself as he worked daily crossword puzzls in ink; an avid reader of anything that didn't move, and he had a wonderful sense of humor.
His eyes always sparkled when he spoke of his home town of Elk Horn. I know being married to his wonderful wife Carolyn, and back living in his home town filled a vast void and he passed on as a very happy man.
We love you Carolyn and our hearts and prayers are with you.
Burt was one of the most important people in my life. He went way out on a limb to hire me at the AP right out of college when my only work experience was as a waitress. The AP said no, Burt dug in his heels, and I got the job. He became an invaluable mentor and friend, at the AP and later The Albuquerque Tribune. He was a peerless writer, editor and teacher. I owe my career to Burt and will always remember him as a kind and generous person. He inspires me everyday to be a better -- and more economical -- writer. Farewell, Burt. Your memory will live on with many, many people. I'm so glad you found the happiness you deserved. My deepest condolences to Carolyn.
Ken and Sharon Crane
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Wittrup family in the loss of Burt.
I read about Burt's death on an Albuqueque TV news website. Even though 25 years had passed, I remember him fondly. Burt was a journalism professor of mine at UNM in 1984-85. He was very helpful and always had time to work with me. I was fortunate to have him as a professor during those important college years.
My condolences to his family. I just thought you'd want to hear from a former student who was lucky to be in his class.
Lou & Cary Armijo
Goodbye Burt. See you on the otherside, where all our good friends will gather. Our prayers are with you & your family. Caryn & Lou Armijo
To my teacher, mentor, friend.
Rest in peace Mr. Wittrup.
Joline Gutierrez Krueger
Burt Wittrup was my mentor, a big man with a big pot belly, a cigarette always dangling from his lips and, I liked to imagine, a bottle of scotch in his office desk drawer. He was to me what I imagined all good journalists were supposed to be like -- tough, rough, full of vices and vinegar but deep inside, where no one was looking, compassionate and caring and insistent on changing the world.
It is because of him that I became a journalist.
It was around 1985-86, and I had just a few more semesters to finish up my bachelor's at UNM after having traipsed about the country, attending college from Colorado to Oregon. I needed a minor quick so I picked journalism (I was a creative writing major). I figured I would sneak in a bunch of classes all at once, which you are not supposed to do.
Wittrup caught me, called me in his office and read me the riot act. I explained the situation, we chatted awhile and he told me in that trademark gravely voice: "OK, I'll let you slip through the cracks. But I'll be watching you."
He did. He got me my first job in journalism as the copy editor for the Daily Lobo, and from there the doors began to open. He wrote an amazing letter of recommendation for me that won me a spot as a fellow in the Dow Jones Newspaper Fund.
It wasn't until later that I learned he had worked as city editor for my beloved Albuquerque Tribune. That seems so fitting.
Thanks, Professor Wittrup. I owe you everything.
Very sorry to hear. I have great memories of Burt... and he helped me more than I can say in writing, Journalism, and passing on a few of Life's lessons.
Carolyn & family,
I heard the news of Burt's death this morning on the radio (really old-school) news. I shed a few tears, then realized that this would frustrate Burt to no end, so I stopped. He was a brilliant teacher at UNM, a rock of a friend, and a moral compass that I sorely needed at the time. I'd like to think that a little piece of his wry humor and unflagging faith in me will exist as long as I do. Go in peace, Burt.
I worked closely with Burt for several years in the Associated Press bureau in Albuquerque during the tumultuous 1960s. He was probably the finest editor of news copy that I encountered during my newspaper and wire service journalistic career. Burt (or BAW as I always addressed him through our frequent office correspondence) was a man with a steady hand and a fair and balanced approach to news reporting. I know he was proud of his service in the Navy. My wife, Sharon, and I became good friends with Burt and his family – sharing many enjoyable evenings together. They introduced us to the pleasures of outstanding Southwestern cuisine at restaurants in Albuquerque’s Old Town – so much so that Sharon and I still drive from Colorado to northern New Mexico almost every year just to reacquaint ourselves with the best of Southwestern cuisine again. We have visited Elk Horn twice over the years, but we did not know that BAW had returned to his home town, or we certainly would have contacted him for a reunion. Thanks to you, Burt, for your support, your teaching, your patience, and your friendship. Good sailing ahead.
Darrell J. Pehr
I was lucky enough to find my way to the Journalism school at UNM in the early 1980s during a time of wonderful faculty: Bales, Hillerman, Lawrence and of course, Wittrup. I owe a lot to all of them, and I appreciate everything they did for me. Thanks, Burt. You made a difference.
Burt was my mentor, both professionally and personally. The ole curmudgeon had such a soft heart. I'll miss his guidance, his wit and his power-talks (and breakfast at Amigo's!). Carolyn and family, I send my condolences and love...