Former Vancouver Sun columnist and executive editor Shelley Fralic dies

She was also the author and coauthor of several books

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      A longtime local journalist died suddenly in bed in her New Westminster home on May 31. Shelley Fralic was a reporter, columnist, deputy managing editor, and executive editor at the Vancouver Sun at different times prior to her retirement in 2016. She was 68.

      Fralic joined the Vancouver Sun in 1979 and coauthored two books based on the newspaper's files: Making Headlines: 100 Years of The Vancouver Sun and Vancouver in the Seventies: Photos from a Decade That Changed the City. In addition, she wrote The Age of Walter Gage: How One Canadian Shaped the Lives of Thousands and Come Fly with Me: Michael Bublé's Rise to Stardom, a Memoir. Fralic was also the coauthor of Choosing Hope: A Mother's Story of Love, Loss, and she edited Survival and Wildfire: British Columbia Burns.

      The Jack Webster Foundation awarded her a lifetime achievement award in 2017. After she retired, she served as a trustee with the foundation.

      "British Columbia has lost a legend, the media has lost a champion, and we all have lost a friend," the foundation said in a statement. "We are devastated by the sudden loss of Shelley Fralic. Her contributions to journalism are immense, enriching our lives with her words, wit, wisdom and big personality. Shelley continued that impact as a trustee for the Jack Webster Foundation, thoughtfully offering insight and guidance while championing the future of journalism. Her love of storytelling was clear in everything she did. She was never afraid to roll up her sleeves and get things done—and she did it with determination and a wonderful sense of fun. Shelley has left us far too soon. We will miss her. We already do."

      Her former colleague and friend, Pete McMartin, described Fralic's columns as "candid, funny, touching and beautifully written" in an obituary published on the Vancouver Sun website.