William Woestendiek, Jr.
William Woestendiek, Jr.
William Woestendiek, Jr.
William Woestendiek, Jr.
William Woestendiek, Jr.
William Woestendiek, Jr.

Obituary of William John Woestendiek, Jr.

William John Woestendiek, Jr. September 5, 1953 – June 24, 2020 Winston-Salem native and Pulitzer Prize winning journalist John Woestendiek died Wednesday, June 24 at the Kate B. Reynolds Hospice, He was 66. A graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, John's newspaper career included writing for The Arizona Daily Star, The Lexington Leader, The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Charlotte Observer, and The Baltimore Sun. In addition to other awards, he won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting at The Inquirer for outstanding prison beat reporting that lead to proving the innocence of a man serving a life sentence for murder. After retiring from newspapers, John wrote a daily blog (Ohmidog!) about dogs for the next 12 years. In 2010 he published his first book Dog, Inc The Uncanny Story of Cloning Man's Best Friend. His second book, Travels with Ace, chronicled his year-long crosscountry road trip with his super-dog. John was preceded in death by his parents, William John Woestendiek, Sr. and Josephine Pugh Woestendiek and his only child Joseph Woestendiek. He is survived by his sister Kathryn Woestendiek Scepanski (John Scepanski) of DeForest, WI and his brother Ted Woestendiek (James Wong) of Winston-Salem as well as his nephew Chris Hughes of Kenmore, WA and former wives Jennifer Mitchell of New Albany, MS and Erika Hobbs of Chicago, IL. He is also survived by step-siblings Robert Gaston (Patty) of Austin, TX and Maurita Thomas (Peter) Woodland Park, CO, Lauri Olsen (Charles) of Fair Oaks, CA, his aunts and uncles and cousins and many dear friends as well as his Korean rescue dog Jinjja. He will be best remembered for his low-key demeanor, his dry wit and sense of humor and his prowess and perseverance with the written word as well as his love and understanding of all things dog. Due to Covid-19 concerns no public services are planned at this time. Memorial donation may be made in his memory to the Forsyth County Humane Society, 4881 Country Club Road, Winston-Salem, NC 27104.
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