AEJ Founding Father Wagenlehner died at the age of 83
After a long illness Dr. Gunther Wagenlehner, one of the founders of the AEJ, died in Bonn 25 June 2006 at the age of 83.
In 1962, together with other European colleagues, he signed the first rules of the Association of European Journalists. As the International Secretary General of the association for more than ten years, he felt himself responsible for journalists in the Eastern European former communist countries; discussing with them issues such as “Freedom of the press” and “Freedom of Opinion”.
For almost 28 years Dr. Wagenlehner was the President of the German Section of the AEJ. At the end of the 80s he asked me to agree to succeed him in office as the second President of the German section. I agreed.
Personally, I lost a colleague and a personality; one who mastered his life in spite of his terrible fate as a prisoner of war in Russia until 1955, when the first German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer forced the Kremlin to release him.
I would like to offer here my thanks to Dr. Gunther Wagenlehner for having been a good adviser to me, somebody in whom one could trust. And of course many thanks to his wife, Anne, for supporting his huge contributions to the international association and to the German section with such patience and enthusiasm.
Viersen, July 2006.
Dr. Horst Keller.