Merrill Richard Bailey



Died September 22, 1998

College: Saybrook

Widow: Ms. Phyllis C. Freedman
5 Wake Robin Road
Lincoln, RI 02865-5218
Children: Elizabeth

In the words of his daughter, Elizabeth Bailey Brodeur, Merrill R. Bailey “…was a wonderful father, the smartest person I have known and the reason why I went to Yale.” Merrill died at the age of 58 after a long battle with cancer following 35 years as reporter/editor of the Providence Journal, RI.

Merrill came from a family of journalists. After Yale, he received a masters from UCLA, continued on to the Waterbury Republican, Connecticut, then as a reporter in the Warwick news bureau, as a city hall reporter for the Evening Bulletin and finally to the Providence Journal in 1964. Colleagues described him as a hard-nosed newspaper guy, smart, fast, and conscientious about getting the facts right. One former colleague credited Merrill with having introduced him to the New England character – “serious, steadfast, persistent, direct, without guile and always honest.”

In the forefront of computerized journalism, Merrill found himself happily involved in the transition from traditional production to automated page makeup. He was a recipient of several journalism awards and was past president of the Providence Newspaper Guild.

—drawn from a published obituary by Maysie Starr