Monday, February 9, 2009

Slain KSU prof was a good one

Dr. Trudy Steuernagel, the Kent State professor who was beaten in her home and eventually died from the injuries, was one of the handful of professors who stick in your brain for a long time.

She was the reason I completed a Political Science minor at Kent State, both because she encouraged me to pursue it and because when I had an opportunity to cover Congress in Washington for a semester at the Houston Chronicle, she took me on as an independent study so I could complete the minor.

She wore tye-dyed clothes, but challenged anyone who had their minds made up politically. She laughed at jokes with a snort. She brought up her son, Sky Walker, regularly in class, always in loving terms. (Her son, 18, is now charged in connection to her death.)

I haven't talked to her since I graduated, but I have talked about her regularly. Not always by name. She's a professor who made many points worth repeating.

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