Ex-Publisher of Danish-Language Paper Dies

Friday, July 07, 2006

By SOLVEJ SCHOU, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES — Poul Dalby Andersen, who published the only weekly Danish-language newspaper in the United States for 26 years, has died. He was 84.

A longtime Los Angeles resident, he died of complications of Alzheimer's disease at the Sharon Care Center on May 29, his wife, Judy Andersen, said Thursday.

Andersen, a Danish migrant, published the newspaper"Bien"_ meaning"bee"_ from 1975 to 2001 with his wife. The paper was sold to another publisher in 2001 after his illness worsened.

"He was a wonderful man, and we had an incredible life,"Judy Andersen told The Associated Press."He was very active in the Danish community when I met him."

The couple married in 1974 after meeting at the Los Angeles Times, where Poul Andersen worked full-time as a printer from 1950 until his retirement in 1987.

Tireless evenings were spent pulling together the 12-page weekly paper, which Andersen took over from a publisher in San Francisco, his wife said.

The hard work paid off. When"Bien"celebrated its 100th anniversary in 1982, Andersen was knighted by Denmark's Queen Margrethe II.

One time, Judy Andersen recalled, the trainer of Denmark's soccer team recognized Poul, who loved the sport, when the pair traveled in 1992 to Sweden, where the Danish team won the European Cup.

"The trainer told him,'I know who you are. You're Poul Andersen!'Then all these television crews came over, and it was very heartwarming,"she said.

The newspaper business was in Poul's blood, said longtime friend Christian Castenskiold, formerly the head of Scandinavian Airlines in Los Angeles.

Andersen's grandfather co-founded a newspaper in the family's hometown of Ringkoebing, about 140 miles west of Copenhagen, where Andersen was born April 19, 1922. Andersen's father was a typesetter.

During World War II, Andersen's outgoing personality led him to involvement in the Danish resistance.

He was considered an"important member"for his special knowledge of handling plastic explosives, Castenskiold said.

Andersen left for America in 1949 to stay at his uncle's corn farm in Ohio, and he settled in Los Angeles soon after.

"Bien"is one of two Danish-language papers still published in the United States.

The other paper, Illinois-based biweekly"Den Danske Pioneer"("The Danish Pioneer"), was founded in 1872 in Omaha, Neb.

Andersen is also survived by a daughter from a previous marriage, and her two grandchildren.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.