An investigation following the death of Montclair resident and veteran media critic Eric Boehlert, who was struck by a train on April 4, has revealed that NJ Transit safety mechanisms were in working order, according to NJ Transit officials. 

The safety mechanisms “at the crossing including the lights and crossing gates were working as intended,” NJ Transit communications officer Jim Smith said.

While riding his bicycle on Monday, April 4, at around 9:40 p.m., Boehlert was struck and killed by an NJ Transit train where the tracks cross North Fullerton Avenue, according to NJ Transit officials.

Early in his journalism career, Boehlert worked at Billboard and Rolling Stone magazine, then later at Salon and Media Matters. 

He was the author of two nonfiction books: “Lapdogs: How the Press Rolled Over for Bush” (2006), and “Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet Changed Politics and the Press” (2009). 

In 2020 he started his own subscription newsletter, Press Run, and quickly accumulated a large and devoted following. 

Through his journalism, books and appearances on CNN and MSNBC, Boehlert was a powerful defender of democracy, social justice and truth in the media. He was uncompromising and brilliant in his investigation of hypocrisies and double standards in the media, and his contribution was priceless, according to his obituary.

He was a longtime member of the Montclair Commonwealth Club, where he bowled for 20 years with the Condors bowling team, and he also coached his son’s baseball team for four years.

Friends, family and colleagues have mourned his passing since it was announced last Wednesday, April 6. 

He is survived by his wife, Tracy; his two children, Jane and Ben; three siblings, Bart, Thom and Cynthia Boehlert; their spouses, Ted Dawson, Karen Boehlert and Barb Kristofek, and nephews Brian and Aaron Boehlert. 

A memorial service for Boehlert will be held Tuesday, April 12, 1 p.m., at First Congregational Church in Montclair.  

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Eric Boehlert Memorial Scholarship at Montclair High School,

Arrangements were by Caggiano Memorial Home for Funerals.


Talia (she/her) is the education reporter for Montclair Local and is always looking for ways to view stories through a solutions journalism lens. She has spent time in newsrooms of all sizes and scopes....