Skip to Content

Support MinnPost

MinnPost logo 2014 Summer Member Drive

Support the journalism that matters to you
Become a sustaining member today

Deb Howell local memorial, scholarship info

A couple of pieces of info for those who want to remember former Pioneer Press editor and Star Tribune assistant managing editor Deborah Howell, who died over New Year's weekend after being hit by a car in New Zealand:

First, there will be a local memorial service at 11 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 23 at Central Presbyterian Church, 500 Cedar St., Saint Paul. Second, her husband, C. Peter Magrath, sent this note about a perfect way for Howell's legion of fans to memorialize her:

In lieu of flowers, please consider making a contribution of any size to the scholarship we have established in Deborah's name. Here is the information:

Deborah C. Howell Memorial Scholarship for Women in Journalism
The Texas Exes
The University of Texas at Austin
January, 2010

Eligibility: For a woman student at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Journalism who has a demonstrated financial need and is entering the sophomore year.

Background:This Scholarship was created in loving memory of Deborah Howell, University of Texas Alum (BJ’62) by her family.


On January 2, 2010, Deborah died in a tragic accident while vacationing in New Zealand with her husband, C. Peter Magrath. She was 68 years old. Many things have been written about Deborah’s incredible accomplishments in the field of journalism. If you check the facts, you’ll see what a leader she was. But here are some things we’d like you to know about Deborah that you may not find in a newspaper:

Deborah was a gifted listener. She did not interrupt. She took you in 100%--and only when you’d completely spilled your heart out and finally took a breath did she ask if you wanted her advice. That advice was, of course, spot on.

Deborah was hilarious. Her sense of humor had a healthy dose of bawdiness and she was known for the prevalence and precision of her profanity. Her frequent laughter leapt out of her like a child bursting out of class on the last day of school.

Deborah was extremely sensitive. Underneath her one-of-the-boys, newsroom toughness, she was deeply affected by the world around her. She was attuned to multiple frequencies of human behavior. Sometimes that meant that she was easily hurt. But it also meant that she was blessed with tremendous compassion.

Deborah was generous. With her time. With the fruits of her labor. With her knowledge. She was there for so many people. She went to weddings, inaugurations, performances, funerals, book parties, openings...the list is endless. If you were important to her, you knew it by her actions; she told you by showing up.

Our hope, as Deborah’s family, is that in establishing this scholarship we will provide a foundation for the young women recipients to begin a meaningful and bold journalism career. We hope that the scholarship eases a financial need, of course. But it is also our hope that Deborah’s life becomes a touchstone for these women. May the recipients benefit from the path that she so bravely and beautifully blazed by following her example in journalism—and in life:

Listen without agenda.
Laugh without censor.
Feel without fear.
And most importantly...
Show up.

Memorial contributions can be sent to:
Texas Exes Scholarships
P.O. Box 7278
Austin, TX 78713

The checks should be made out to: Texas Exes

Please note in the memo section: Deborah C. Howell Memorial Scholarship

Online contributions can be made at the link below.
https://www.texasexes.org/form/donate.asp

(There is a box in the online form following the words "I would like to donate to the" where you can designate the gift to the
Deborah C. Howell Memorial Scholarship.)

Again, thank you for your condolences and care. Your support carries us as we walk this difficult road.

Sincerely,

C. Peter Magrath
Monette Magrath
Valerie Carroll

Get MinnPost's top stories in your inbox

Related Tags: