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How incredibly odd it is to see Sally Mauk's empty office.

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This is Edward O'Brien from the MTPR newsroom. I've worked for Sally for some 20-years.

Over the past several weeks we've heard from so many of you who will miss her thoughtful interviews, intelligent conversations and journalistic integrity.  I will too, but let me tell you about something you may not know; and that is just how humane a boss - and friend - she is.
     
    One brief example: just over three years ago, I made the agonizing decision to end the suffering of my beautiful, big-headed and unbelievably sweet Rottweiler, Sadie. I was a wreck; heartbroken, miserable and depressed. I couldn't concentrate on anything, much less go on the air. Some things I just can't fake.
    I had some annual leave saved up and asked Sally for a couple of days off to mourn and pull it together.         
   Without hesitation - and with a long hug - she gave me a week.
   
   How many bosses would do that? And that's only one example of her generosity. When I thanked her on my return, she just said: “No problem. We all have lives outside of this place.”

Indeed we do.
   
   And may this next phase of yours, Sally, be filled with happiness and good health.
   
    Thank you.
    For everything.

O’Brien first landed at Montana Public Radio three decades ago as a news intern while attending the University of Montana School of Journalism. His first career job out of school was covering the 1995 Montana Legislature. When the session wrapped up, O’Brien was fortunate enough to land a full-time position at the station as a general assignment reporter. Feel free to drop him a line at edward.obrien@umt.edu.
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