Letter: Graphic information was unnecessary, hurtful


Regarding the Jan. 16, 2019 article, “Man kills his ex-girlfriend, calls to tell mother, then shoots self” was disturbing, especially given the grief and trauma experienced by the family and those surrounding them.

As superintendent of the South Whidbey School District, I rarely respond to news articles. In this case I believe that the unnecessarily graphic descriptions included in the article created another level of anxiety for those affected by this tragic event.

While you provided a disclaimer at the beginning of the article, I wonder if you realize the depth and breadth of the impact this incident has had on our school community.

Besides the obvious impact to immediate survivors, there are teachers who taught Ms. Blouin and her children. There are young cousins and significant others in South Whidbey and Coupeville.

There are people who know the grandparents and worked with them. They are all dealing with terrible loss. Was it necessary to subject them to a detailed description of the graphic violence inflicted on their daughter and the mother of their grandchildren?

To ask them to relive the actual phone call and the words said to a mother who was told of her daughter’s murder?

I recognize and strongly believe in the freedom of the press and the importance of providing information to the public. It is something we must protect.

However, some details are not necessary to create a fuller picture of the story, especially in a case where children are impacted.

Information should be used with sensitivity and discretion.

Jo Moccia

Superintendant, South Whidbey School District

Editor’s note: The mothers of the victim visited our Freeland office Wednesday after the article appeared. They wanted to pass along to the reporter, “We were worried about what she’d write but she did her research and it was a very good story.” They offered their appreciation to the reporter for her well-written and sensitive article.

More in Letters to the Editor

Letter: Langley must do more to become disabled friendly

Editor, I want to add my voice to those requesting more consideration… Continue reading

Letter: Will state ferries become service only for wealthy?

Editor, It’s easy for us average people to despair over the enormous… Continue reading

Letter: WhidbeyHealth, Careage provide exceptional care

Editor, I have had surgery at WhidbeyHealth Medical Center and my wife… Continue reading

Letter: Recent clear-cutting on Maxwelton ‘obscene’

Editor, The recent clear-cut abomination on Maxwelton Road near the elementary schools… Continue reading

Letter: Air travel is accelerating human destruction

Editor, My curiosity, followed by a few calculations, led me to a… Continue reading

Letter: Thank you to those who helped put out fire

Editor, On Sunday, July 28, we experienced a residential fire in which… Continue reading

Letter: Ebey’s National Historical Reserve isn’t necessary

Editor, I don’t expect a lot of public support for this, but… Continue reading

Letter: Experience at emergency room was very frustrating

Editor, My first experience in the WhidbeyHealth emergency room was in May… Continue reading

Letter: Offering up a suggestion for reducing anticipated noise

Editor, Fellow islanders, I may have the almost perfect solution for reducing… Continue reading

Most Read