Longtime Dothan Eagle and Dothan Progress reporter Michele Watson Forehand died unexpectedly at her home Wednesday night. She was 45.
Forehand covered police and courts for the Eagle and was a tenacious and prolific reporter who could shift with ease from chronicling murder and mayhem to a light-hearted preview of a small-town street festival. She had sources across the Wiregrass and knew who to call when she needed information on virtually any topic.
On Wednesday, several of those individuals in law enforcement praised Forehand for her strong reporting skills, especially in making sure all information was factual.
Her colleagues remember her strong work ethic, the ability to multi-task at a high level and her dedication to readers.
“The Eagle’s entire staff is shocked and saddened by the sudden loss of Michele,” Eagle Editor Terry Connor said Thursday. “Michele was an outstanding community journalist who was never too busy to make sure our readers were served at the highest level. She will be truly missed in the newsroom and throughout the Wiregrass community that she loved.”
Prior to joining the Eagle staff, Forehand wrote for the Progress and its associated publications, including the Headland Observer. She began her journalism career as a news clerk at the Progress in 2001, and was named editor of the Observer in July 2002.
Since then, Forehand held several positions prior to becoming the Eagle’s primary crime and courts writer in 2017. Additionally, she continued to edit the Progress on a weekly basis.
Forehand, a Dothan High School graduate, is survived by her husband, Tim, and one son, Brandon. Funeral arrangements, which are being handled by Peel Funeral Home in Bonifay, have not been finalized.