According to a widely-repeated legend, one major American newspaper actually printed Mark Twain’s obituary and, when Twain was told about this by a reporter, he quipped: “The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated.”
Like Twain, some over-eager newspapers and civil functionaries have been trying to bury me for years.
When I married Ann McGuire in December 1951 the local newspaper wrote that my wife had married the “late” Edwin S. Jordan. I don’t know how that happened, but the marriage took place on December 16th, and perhaps the proofreader was suffering a hangover following an office Christmas party.
In 2015 they tried to dispose of me again. My wife died on April 17th that year, and the Howard County office of the Department of Social Security immediately informed my banks, creditors, etc. that it was me who had died. What a mess that was! I got a corrective letter from the Social Security office, but it took an in-person appearance to convince my bank that I was still among the living. All my credit cards had been cancelled, and it required time to straighten things out.
Talk about Fake News! Should you receive some future report of my demise, be skeptical and check it out.