Last week, we reported on the shocking death of much-beloved veteran L.A. journo Tony Tranfa, the online editor of the Daily Breeze who was 49.
Today, former co-worker Stuart Pfiefer, of the LAT tells us Tranfa was buried Saturday at Green Hills Memorial Park in Rancho Palos Verdes. Services were at the Green Hills chapel before an overflow crowd that included dozens of former reporters he’d mentored through the years.
Of his former colleague Pfiefer says:
“Tony was an amazing, fun, joyful person who truly loved newspapering and writing and life. He used to tell me to sprinkle nuggets throught my stories to reward readers who stayed with me. I think about some of his advice even now, 12 years after I left the Breeze.
I spent about one year sitting next to him on the city desk. That’s when I covered the cops beat, and the Breeze stationed the cops reporter on the city desk, next to Tony. That year was some of the most fun I had in the business. We’d talk baseball and music and stories and life. We had a silly little game in which he’d come up with an unusual or fun word and challenge me to include it in an upcoming story. Lucid and lavender were two of the words. I got ’em in and won coffees off of him.
We often talked about strong endings to stories. And he and I came up with an ending that I still think about to this day. It was a story about a mom who killed her baby son, Antonio, in Gardena. The story talked about breakdowns by Children’s Protective Services that allowed the mother to retain custody of Antonio before killing him. It ended with an explanation of how the mother gave birth to another boy while in prison and her husband drove to prison to take the child home. It ended like this: He named him Antonio.
I’ll miss Tony.
Earlier: Local Journos Remember Tony Tranfa