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Manfred Pagel - a gracious man

Manfred interviewed me in 1979, when he was head of the economic services. I had applied as a German speaker as much as someone who knew about markets and companies. But I wasn’t expecting a German to be leading the interview - let alone the service I was trying to join. Tongue-tied, I mixed words from my feeble Swedish into poorly formed German sentences and left the room embarrassed and certain I had blown my one chance. Only after postings to Frankfurt and Zurich did I realise he had attended the same university I had - the University of Illinois - which may have saved me from myself. Throughout my time at Reuters and for years after I had left, he always spoke to me as a friend and valued colleague. A gracious man. ■