Thursday, June 30, 2011

Stories of Betty Jaycox sought

Hello. I discovered your blog BJ Alums and was hoping you could put out a plea for retirees with memories of Betty Jaycox to email me.

I am a journalism historian who specializes in telling the stories of women's page journalism. I am working on an article about Betty.

Thanks for your help.
Best, Kim Voss
Kimberly Wilmot Voss, PhD
Assistant Professor
Nicholson School of Communication
University of Central Florida

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Newsweek ages Princess Diana digitally

Nice typo in screen shot of Morning Joe: Princess of Whales

Tina Brown, editor-in-chief of Newsweek and the Daily Beast, knows that some people don’t care for her magazine’s “Diana at 50” cover photo, which digitally aged the deceased princess and stuck her next to the living Kate Middleton.

“Some people think it’s kind of spooky and ‘Should we have done it?’ and others think it’s very effective,” Brown said when asked about the response to the controversial cover on Wednesday’s “Morning Joe.” “I think it’s a very intriguin
g package to show what she’d be like today.”

The cover, which accompanies Brown’s story that imagines what Diana would have been like today, has created a large amount of debate about how appropriate it is for a magazine to use an altered image of a dead woman.

Jezebel’s Dodai Stewart called the cover “very” creepy, pointing out that it might be upsetting to her children, Prince William and Prince Harry, to see their mother like this. The Los Angeles Times is conducting a poll to ask readers whether the cover is “shocking, brilliant or just plain cheap.” So far, a majority have voted that it’s “horribly” or “somewhat” offensive.

Following the strong responses to the cover, Brown released a statement Tuesday: “We wanted to bring the memory of Diana alive in a vivid image that transcends time and reflects my piece.”

She expanded on this idea Wednesday, saying the photo was the “best way to ... communicate” the idea behind her imaginative piece. “I wanted to make her a time traveler.”

Harold McElroy is showing improvement

BJ Alums got this email about Beacon Journal business department retiree Harold McElroy, who had surgery to remove his cancerous right lung, from BJ Circulation
Department retiree Janet Hall, who forwarded it from Sheryl Scott Sheinin.

Harold was moved to a room today (Monday) and is showing improvement, is doing some walking, but still has the feeding tube. If he continues to improve, they may transfer him closer to home, which would help Mom (Linda) immensely. All his numbers have looked good for several days, so everything sounds positive.

-- Cheryl

Click on the headline for earlier reports on Harold.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Confidence in newspapers, TV rebounds

Americans' confidence in newspapers and television news rebounded slightly in the past year, having been stuck at record lows since 2007. The 28% of Americans who express a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in newspapers and the 27% who say the same about television news still lag significantly behind the levels of trust seen through much of the 1990s and into 2003.

The findings are from Gallup's annual update on confidence in institutions, which found few other notable changes from last year. Newspapers and television news rank 10th and 11th in confidence, respectively, among the 16 institutions tested. While the improvement for each is small in absolute terms, it could mark the beginning of the reversal of the trend seen in recent years. The Pew Project for Excellence in Journalism's annual report on The State of the News Media suggests that the state of the media improved in 2010 as content providers found new ways to meet the changing needs of their audiences as well as new revenue models.

Read the report

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Same-sex marriage law passes: See headlines

Late Friday night, the New York State Senate passed by 33 to 29 a bill that gives same-sex partners the right to marry. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the bill into law almost 90 minutes later, at 11:55 p.m. Thirty days from its passage, same-sex couples can apply for a marriage license. New York becomes the 6th state to pass a same-sex marriage law, but the first with a Republican-controlled legislature. Four Republicans and 29 Democrats voted in favor of it.

Poynter displays how the decision was announced on New York’s front pages Saturday. [See front pages]

At least 50,000 people watched the vote via live stream from the Senate, according to a tweet from the legislature’s account.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Setback for Harold McElroy

BJ Alums got this email about Beacon Journal business department retiree Harold McElroy, who had surgery to remove his cancerous right lung, from BJ Circulation Department retiree Janet Hall.

Harold had a setback and heart rate went sky high. Dr. said it was due to "bad air" not leaving his body as it should have.

Now they did a procedure and it went well. Linda has been at hospital and hotel and is exhausted and not eaten well so tonight she is going to eat and go to bed. He should get off the ventilator tomorrow.

UPDATE: just got off the phone. the procedure went well, and they are planning to remove the ventilator in the morning. doctor says he is back on track. Mom is exhausted and hasn't had a decent meal in days, so she was on her way to eat, then back to the hotel to sleep.

-- John Scott

Janet Hall forwarded the email from Sheryl Scott Sheinin.

Click on the headline for previous BJ Alums items on Harold.

Gay partner's name left out of obit.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark (Reuters) – A small newspaper in north central Arkansas is considering changing its policy on obituaries after a local man complained that the Batesville Daily Guard discriminated against him for being gay.

Terrence James said that through a funeral home, he submitted an obituary to the Daily Guard for his partner, John Millican, who died on June 11 of spinal meningitis. James listed himself as Millican's partner on the obituary form. When the free obituary was printed, James' name was omitted.

"I was already in shock and grieving over John's death," James told Reuters. "It never even occurred to me I would find my last slap in the face after his death at my local newspaper."

Oscar Jones, whose family has owned the newspaper for 82 years, told Reuters that the Daily Guard has a policy of not listing names of unmarried partners, gay or straight, in free obituaries. Paid obituaries cost $85.

"Our policy has more to do with space and manpower issues than it does sexual orientation," said Jones, who is the newspaper's attorney. His mother, Pat Jones, is the Daily Guard's owner and manager.

Oscar Jones said that it might be time to reconsider the policy. He said that since James objected, he has talked with the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation about possible ways to update the policy.

"Those policies are stuck in a drawer and don't get review often," Jones said. "Frankly, it hasn't come up before, but it's something that needs to be reviewed. I truly sympathize with this family."

James said that the newspaper told him that if he had chosen a paid obituary, he could have even listed pets.

"That was even worse, comparing John to a pet," James said. "It also reeked of hucksterism."

The Center for Artistic Revolution, a non-profit gay rights group "that fights for fairness and equality for all Arkansans," has launched a campaign for people to call the newspaper to protest.

Randi Romo, a Center representative, said the paper has no right to determine who is a family member and who is not.

"At every turn we are reminded we are not equal and this was a rather stark reminder that even in death there is no equality," Romo told Reuters.

Romo said that the Center will continue to challenge the newspaper until the policy is changed.

"Sometimes the surviving grieving partner, gay or straight, only has that little piece of paper as a last memento of their loved one's life," she said. "They need to know that families look very different than they did 25 years ago."

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Knight News Challenge winners announced

Sixteen projects that push the future of news and information will receive a total of $4.7 million in funding. The 2011 Knight News Challenge winners are:

* Adaptive Path (San Francisco) for iWitness; $360,000; Jesse James Garrett, project lead
* The Associated Press (New York) for Overview; $475,000; Jonathan Stray
* The Awesome Foundation (Boston) for The Awesome Foundation: News Taskforce; $244,000; Tim Hwang
* Chicago Tribune for PANDA; $150,000; Brian Boyer
* Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE) (Columbia, Mo.) for DocumentCloud Reader Annotations; $320,000; Aron Pilhofer
* The Kiwanja Foundation (Palo Alto) for FrontlineSMS; $250,000; Sean McDonald
* Media and Place Productions (Cambridge, Mass.) for Zeega; $420,000; Kara Oehler
* The Miller Center Foundation (Charlottesville, Va) for The State Decoded; $165,000; Waldo Jaquith
* El Mostrador (Santiago, Chile) for Poderopedia; $200,000; Miguel Paz
* NextDrop (Berkeley) and Hubli-Dharwad (India) for Nextdrop; $375,000; Anu Sridharan
* Open Knowledge Foundation (Cambridge, England) for Spending Stories; $250,000; Martin Keegan
* The Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science (Cambridge, Mass.) for The Public Laboratory; $500,000; Jeffrey Warren
* ScraperWiki (Liverpool, England) for ScraperWiki; $280,000; Francis Irving
* The Tiziano Project (Los Angeles) for Tiziano 360; $200,000; Jon Vidar
* University of North Carolina (Chapel Hill) for OpenBlock Rural; $275,000; Ryan Thornburg
* Ushahidi (Orlando) for SwiftRiver; $250,000; David Kobia

Update on Harold McElroy

BJ Alums got this email about Beacon Journal business department retiree Harold McElroy's surgery to remove his cancerous right lung from BJ Circulation Department retiree Janet Hall.

Her son John said the surgery was 9 hours and he did fine. Had to remove 4 ribs because the cancer had gone into a rib. Dr. said he was pleased with the surgery and felt they got it all. He was being fed by IV because he was having trouble swallowing.

Janet Hall forwarded the email from Sheryl Scott Sheinin.

The McElroys live on Pawleys Island, South Carolina, a block from retired BJ printer Dick Latshaw and wife Pat and a mile from the Atlantic Ocean. Both families have been there for at least a decade.

Click on the headline to see a previous posting on Harold's surgery.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Casino resort to replace Miami Herald

The Miami Herald will be replaced by a casino repot.

A $3 billion Downtown Miami resort will be built on Miami Herald land by
Genting Group, one of the world's largest international casino developers, .

Genting, the Malaysian developer bought 140 acres of Biscayne Bay-fronting land on May 27 from The McClatchy Co. (NYSE: MNI) for $236 million or about $1.69 million per acre.

The Miami site has 800 feet of waterfront along Biscayne Bay.

That was one of the highest prices for commercial dirt in South Florida in the last decade, according to brokers who track land transactions.

The deal took two months to put together.

The Florida Legislature has still not approved the operation of full-based casinos in the state despite millions of dollars spent by casino-hired lobbyists to change the law over the last 10 years.

"Everybody is posturing and planning and hoping the Legislature will make a decision to make destination resorts a reality" and Genting's deal just "upped the ante,'' he said.

The Miami Herald Media Co.'s newspaper, The Miami Herald, sits on 14 acres of the acquired 140-acre site. The Herald has two years to find another publishing venue, according to a May 27 news release from McClatchy.

The land's owner of record is a Genting subsidiary, Bayfront 2011 Property LLC. The Herald's building is part of the sale.

Genting and its affiliates are leading developers and operators of destination resorts around the world, including the United States, Malaysia, Manila, Singapore and the United Kingdom.

In his prepared statement, Gary Pruitt, McClatchy's chairman and chief executive, said, "This property, located on Biscayne Bay, has been home to The Miami Herald for many years. While locating newspaper operations on the bay may have made sense in the past, it no longer is the best fit.

"Importantly, the sale of this real estate has no impact on the mission of The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald," Pruitt said.

"The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald's commitments to providing high quality, public service journalism on multiple platforms and to providing the broadest, most effective reach for their advertisers have never been stronger," Pruitt said.

Pruitt said McClatchy will use $236 million of the proceeds as follows:

$163 million will be contributed to the company's pension plan.
$65 million will be offered (the Offer) to the holders of the company's 2017 senior secured notes (Noteholders) at par as required by the note indenture.
$2 million will be used to pay for transfer taxes associated with the sale.

The remaining $6 million will be held in an escrow account payable to McClatchy upon relocation of its Miami operations.

Gannett lays off 700 newspaper division employees

That’s about 2 percent of the workforce, according to Gannett US Community Publishing division president Bob Dickey. “Publishers will notify people today and we will make every effort to reach everyone by end of day,” he says in a memo that’s posted below. “It is important to note that these decisions do not reflect individual performance and we thank and respect those employees for their work.” In March it was disclosed that Gannett CEO Craig Dubow received a $1.25 million cash bonus and had his salary doubled.

June 21, 2011
To: All US Community Publishing employees
From: Bob Dickey

As we reach the mid-point of the year, the economic recovery is not happening as quickly or favorably as we had hoped and continues to impact our U.S. community media organizations. We have made continued progress on the many initiatives underway to seek new sources of revenue, build a world class sales force and better serve our customers through watchdog reporting and stronger Sunday newspapers. While we are seeing improved circulation results and audience growth, weakness in the real estate sector, slow job creation and now softer auto ad demand continue to challenge revenue growth in the division.

National advertising remains soft and with many of our local advertisers reducing their overall budgets, we need to take further steps to align our costs with the current revenue trends. Each of our local media organizations faces its own market conditions, challenges and opportunities. Therefore, it has been up to each local publisher to determine his or her unique course of action.

While we have sought many ways to reduce costs, I regret to tell you that we will not be able to avoid layoffs. Accordingly, approximately 700 employees within USCP, or about 2% of our company’s overall workforce, will be let go. Publishers will notify people today and we will make every effort to reach everyone by end of day. It is important to note that these decisions do not reflect individual performance and we thank and respect those employees for their work. We will do everything we can to help them and to minimize the impact on our other employees going forward. In an effort to reduce the number of people being let go, there will be furloughs in the coming months but they will be limited only to those on the USCP corporate payroll who make over a certain salary. You will be notified by your publisher if you are among this group.

These have been extremely difficult and painful decisions to make. I know the impact is felt by everyone within USCP and companywide.

I appreciate and thank you for all that you do to create and deliver award-winning journalism to our customers and communities every day. Even under these challenging circumstances, I know you will continue to do so and your efforts are greatly appreciated by our customers and colleagues within Gannett.

As always, please feel free to email me directly at with any questions you may have.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Retired printers who got back cheaper prescriptions

In an earlier post about retired printer Hugh Downing, I mentioned that those who were named in the lawsuit are saving hundreds of dollars that those who did not join the lawsuit are paying. The original post:

Hugh and Sharon have another reason to be happy. They were among the retired printers in the health care lawsuit against the Beacon Journal. A judge’s preliminary injunction restored their prescription co-pay benefits, made the BJ reimburse them for their extra prescription costs above the retirement-day co-pays and reinstated secondary insurance coverage, which usually pays the 20% of the costs that Medicare allows but doesn’t pay. Medicare pays the other 80%.

Only those printers named in the lawsuit got their $2 to $5 co-pay prescription benefits back and reimbursement for overpayments -- husband and wife Dave and Gina White, who live in Venice, Florida after decades of residing in Sarasota; Norm Mattern; Ray Wolfe; Ruth West; Bob Abbott; and three or four others whose names I don’t know yet.

Retired printers who did not join the lawsuit continue to pay hundreds of dollars more than those who signed up for the lawsuit.

I asked the attorneys for the retired printers to give me the complete list of those who are in the lawsuit and thus have had their $2 to $5 prescription co-pay cards restored. His reply:

The named plaintiffs in the White case are:
Dave & Regina White
Hugh and Sharon Downing
Ruth and Tom West
Bob Abbott
Bob Walker
Larnie and Stephanie Greene
Ora and Shirley Thombs
Ray and Amy Wolfe
Norm and Naomi Mattern

However, I was not accurate about those who had the BJ going back to paying the 20% of the amount that Medicare approved (Medicare pays the 80%; the BJ the other 20%) for medical care (doctors, hospitals, etc.). Some got the 20% co-pay back, some did not, depending on when they retired. Again, the attorney's clarification:

While all have had their Rx benefit restored, only those who retired in or before 1992, under their retirement letters, will receive a secondary-insurance benefit.

So those who joined the retired printers lawsuit are paying hundreds of dollars less than retired printers who did NOT join the lawsuit. In my case, for example, losing the $2 co-pay card has cost me an extra $6,837.29 in out-of-pocket prescription payments since Feb. 1, 2007 when Black Press instituted the health care changes.

I have filed a similar lawsuit against the BJ for the health care coverage changes made for Guild retirees, particularly changes made Feb. 1, 2007 after Black Press became the BJ's owner.

--- John Olesky

Friday, June 17, 2011

Boston-Herald offers buyouts

The Boston Herald today offered employees voluntary buyout packages in order to trim staff and cut costs.

The offer was made to all the newspaper’s staff and managers, according to an e-mail sent to members of the Herald’s newsroom union. Guild members are being offered two weeks salary for every year of service.

Workers taking the buyout package would have until July 1 to make a decision, and any staff reductions would come next month, the Herald reported on its web site.

“The staffing adjustments we’re making are a result of revenue pressure all newspapers are experiencing. However, the financial efficiencies we are undertaking, coupled with the really great print and online products we publish every day, will position us well for the future,’’ Herald Publisher Patrick J. Purcell said in a statement.

The Herald has more than 200 employees, according to employee estimates.

Bill Brotherton, the newsroom chairperson for the Guild, wrote in his email to colleagues, “But don’t fret, this is nothing like the dire situation we encountered a few years ago, when so many of our union brothers and sisters left or were laid off. We are not going out of business. This is a belt-tightening move by Pat Purcell and his financial team.”

Remembering John S. Knight

JOHN S. KNIGHT Died, June 16, 1981

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Report on Harold McElroy's surgery

BJ Alums got this email about Beacon Journal business department retiree Harold McElroy's surgery to remove his cancerous right lung. It came by way of Sheryl Scott Sheinin, who forwarded it from John Scott.

UPDATE on Harold.
From John Scott: just got off the phone with Mom. everything went great. It took 9 hours and they did find some more cancer, but were able to remove all of it. The Doctor is very pleased.

They feel that this has been the root of his problem all along. The tumor was larger than a baseball and was growing into the ribs.

Thank You to all for the thoughts and prayers. Keep em coming as he recovers from this.

Click on the headline to see an earlier story on the situation for Harold, who lives in Pauleys Island, South Carolina.

Carrie's husband writes about her recovery

BJ Alums received this email from John Krack, husband of Caroline "Carrie" Moore Krack, who is BJ newsroom retiree Tom Moore's daughter.

This is the letter I’ve been waiting for 5 months to write. We brought her home to Minnesota on Monday, June 6. She’s doing very well. Her balance has improved. She’s able to walk most places with a single cane, and walks around the house with no support. She still has some weakness in her right side, but that’s expected to resolve as she (as she puts it) “gets back to being an adult,” and resumes her normal activities. She still needs a little bit more therapy, and we’re working on getting that set up. Every indication is that she will make a complete recovery. She’s lost about 40 pounds, and looks great. (I guess I'll have to buy her a new wardrobe, but I don't mind one bit!)

We saw the cardiologist May 31, and he said her cardiac ejection factor is 60%, which is spot-on normal. She has no apparent heart issues, and he was absolutely amazed that she has done so well. She did a driver evaluation June 2, and the examiner said she’s very close to being able to drive. The biggest problem was that the right-side weakness kept her from moving quickly enough between the accelerator and the brake, and that should improve as she gets stronger. She also needs to process information more quickly, and that should also get better. We don’t have a timeline, but I’d expect her to be driving again in a few months. Meanwhile, she's got a captive chauffeur, though we may need to enlist some of you to help from time to time..

She saw the ophthalmologist today, who said her eyes are very healthy. Next are follow-up appointments with her other doctors to transition her monitoring and care to MN.

I drove to Akron on May 30, and spent the week there. In addition to the doctor appointment and last few therapy sessions, we stopped by the ICU and specialty hospital where she spent January and February, and showed her off to the nurses and therapists who worked with her. Carrie, of course, didn’t remember many of them, but was glad to meet and thank them, and they were very happy to see how well she’s doing. Carrie took a bunch of scrubbies along and handed them out to the nurses. Most of the docs I wanted to see weren’t available, but we did run into the doctor who was in charge of her respiratory care at the specialty hospital (oversaw her swallowing tests and trach tube removal) . She (the doctor), who I pegged as pretty matter-of-fact and not particularly warm, almost went crazy with surprise at how well Carrie was doing. We think she even surprised some of the interns who were with her by her reaction. It was fun all around to see these care-givers again under more positive circumstances.

We drove to NW Pennsylvania for an overnight to visit my brother and sister-in-law, and my mom and sister and aunts/uncle. It was a trial to see how Carrie would do on long-distance travel, and she did fine. We celebrated our 29th wedding anniversary with her family on Sunday, and headed home Monday. I had planned to spend a night on the road, but she said she was feeling well and wanted to keep moving, so we got in late Monday evening, to be welcomed by lots of beautiful flowers left in our yard by friends. (And she was able to use the ladies' room entirely by herself!)

She’s been to several get-togethers with friends in the past week, and we’ve spent a lot of time cleaning up the house. She still tires easily and needs to take naps, but is able to do light housework and other activities with no problem.

So, things are moving forward and getting back to normal. The doctors all say she’s a “miracle lady,” and we would have to agree. We’re certain that your love and kindness and prayers and support throughout this journey had a great deal to do with her remarkable recovery. Her parents have been absolutely wonderful through all of this, providing her with loads of support, and a quiet place to recover, as she continued her therapy. Overall, we couldn’t have hoped for a better outcome.

We thank all of you again, and look forward seeing you in the weeks to come.

You can email her at

God Watch! Love and Hugs.

Carrie and John

Caroline/Carrie came down with meningitis in January and was in a coma for weeks.

Click on the headline to read earlier stories on her health situation.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

BJ photos over the years

For dozens of photos of former Beacon Journal employees over the years, click on the headline.

Surgery for Harold McElroy

Beacon Journal business department retiree Harold McElroy will have his right lung removed Thursday. The email from Harold's wife, Linda:


Just wanted you to know that Harold was diagnosed with lung cancer recently. He is having surgery to remove the rest of his right lung on Thursday. He has been in a lot of pain for about 6 months with the shoulder area. We now think it is the tumor in the top of his lung.

Take care.

BJ Circulation Department retiree Janet Hall forwarded the email to the BJ Alums blog.

The McElroys live on Pawleys Island, South Carolina, a block from retired BJ printer Dick Latshaw and wife Pat and a mile from the Atlantic Ocean. Both families have been there for at least a decade.

Retired BJ printer Sid Sprague moved from Pawleys Island to Colorado after Sid's wife died. Sid remarried and his second wife has family in Colorado.

Sid's wife, Sandra, 64, died in 2003. Sid's son, Steve, 38, of Middleburg, Virginia, died May 4, 2010.

Dick Latshaw emailed this about Harold's upcoming surgery:

The photo (of Harold and Linda) was taken in Hawaii on our 50th anniversary In January, 2011.

I saw Harold this morning. He is in good spirits.


Click on the headline to see more photos of the Latshaws and the McElroys in Hawaii in January 2011.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

McClatchy names Kansas City Star publisher

The McClatchy Co. today named Mi-Ai Parrish publisher and president of The Kansas City Star effective June 20.

Parrish, publisher of the company’s Idaho Statesman since July 2006, succeeds Mark Zieman, who recently became a vice president of operations at McClatchy after 25 years at The Star.

Parrish, 40, had been deputy managing editor for features and visuals at the Minneapolis Star Tribune when promoted to the publisher’s post in Boise, Idaho.

Her journalism career has included work at the San Francisco Chronicle, Arizona Republic, Chicago Sun-Times and Virginian-Pilot.

“The Kansas City Star has a storied history, and I’m humbled to be part of its future,” Parrish said.

Catching up with . . . Hugh Downing

By John Olesky (BJ 1969-96)

Despite two heart attacks and a stroke over the years that left his right hand “a little weak,” retired Beacon Journal printer Hugh Downing rarely travels because “you don’t want to leave” The Villages retirement community in Florida. That’s the city where there are 100,000 people and 40,000 golf carts and 90 miles of cart paths to drive on for groceries, restaurants, the mall, and, yes, to play golf, although Hugh said he’s down to only twice a week nowadays. “Sharon plays more,” Hugh said.

Oh, Hugh and wife Sharon – who grew up in Galion, Ohio – do drive one of their two cars north to visit their four sons, but their two golf carts provide most of their transportation. Son Chris Downing lives in Hudson. Mark, Ben and Jonathan reside in Toledo, Vienna, Virginia, and Erie, Pennsylvania. The four sons – with their wives’ help, of course – have given Hugh and Sharon seven grandchildren. Hugh and Sharon, who have been married 51 years, will be driving to Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia next month to “make the rounds” of their sons and their families.

“By the time we make the rounds of the children (all four sons and their wives and children), I’m pretty beat,” Hugh said.

Retired printer Carl Nelson, who has a father-in-law in The Villages, “stopped here,” Hugh said. “Here” is 20 miles south of Ocala and 45 miles northwest of Orlando with 38 golf courses -- 29 nine-hole layouts are free for residents -- and 32 adults-only neighborhood centers with pools. The carts use tunnels and one overpass where highways and golf courses overlap.

Hugh and Sharon have taken a few cruises, including to Hawaii and another off California, but with everything that The Villages offers, “you don’t want to leave,” Hugh said. Maybe living in Medina for 37 winters has something to do with that attitude. They have been in The Villages, where the median age is 66, for more than 10 years.

Hugh said he’s chatted with BJ retirees on the phone, but seen only Carl Nelson face-to-face.

Hugh and Sharon were reunited with my late wife Monnie and I more than a decade ago on Siesta Key, which is adjacent to Sarasota, Florida. We were in our usual February hangout, Sea Castle, and the Downings rented an apartment once owned by retired printer Bill Gorrell, whose two-building complex got a lot of BJ visitors over the decades.

Hugh recalls that the late retired printer Bob Peel and his wife stayed with Gorrell before Bill’s death. Many a poker game and a few drinks happened in Poor Bill’s complex. The BJ crowd even squeezed in some golf at Sarasota’s many courses.

Sea Castle was torn down several years ago to make way for another beachfront high-rise, this one owned by Marriott, so Paula and I – who had continued the Sea Castle stays in February to escape Northeast Ohio winters -- had to switch to a Siesta Key rental about a block away.

Hugh and Sharon have another reason to be happy. They were among the retired printers in the health care lawsuit against the Beacon Journal. A judge’s preliminary injunction restored their prescription co-pay benefits, made the BJ reimburse them for their extra prescription costs above the retirement-day co-pays and reinstated secondary insurance coverage, which usually pays the 20% of the costs that Medicare allows but doesn’t pay. Medicare pays the other 80%.

Only those printers named in the lawsuit got their $2 to $5 co-pay prescription benefits back and reimbursement for overpayments -- husband and wife Dave and Gina White, who live in Venice, Florida after decades of residing in Sarasota; Norm Mattern; Ray Wolfe; Ruth West; Bob Abbott; and three or four others whose names I don’t know yet.

Retired printers who did not join the lawsuit continue to pay hundreds of dollars more than those who signed up for the lawsuit.

I also have a health care lawsuit against the Beacon for changing my Guild retiree coverage long after I retired. That case has not been resolved.

If you want to contact Hugh and Sharon, their phone number is (352) 789-7481. Their email address is Their U.S. mail address is 17900 S.E. 87th Bourne Ave., The Villages, FL 32159.

To catch up on what's happened to other former BJ employees, click on Catching Up under Labels on the left side of this page.

Giffen posts photos of African safari

Tom Giffen and wife are touring Africa and he has been posting some beautiful photos on his facebook page. You may have to friend him to see the photos.

Go to photos

Monday, June 13, 2011

Miami Herald congratulates Heat

As if reading the Sports section didn't suck enough for Heat fans this morning, Miami Herald readers opened their paper to find a nearly full-page ad reading "Congratulations Miami!" next to photos of Heat championship T-shirts and hats from Macy's

Read story

Newspaper stocks good, but avoid McClatchy

A Wall Street Journal story reports newspaper stocks have been depressed by the industry's woes. But some could reward investors because the companies possess valuable nonprint assets like TV stations and Internet properties, as well as still-profitable papers.

In contrast, investors probably should avoid two weaker newspaper companies: debt-laden McClatchy (MNI) and Lee Enterprises (LEE).

Only about 25% of adults from 18 to 34 read a daily paper. Newspapers, however,
remain an important source of local news, and they have done a good job of cutting costs, resulting in healthy profit margins of around 20%.

Gannett, at about $14 a share, trades for less than seven times projected 2011 profits of $2.20 a share. Mr. Arthur argues that it's cheap, given the value of its 23 TV stations around the country and its digital properties, notably a 51% stake in, a leading online jobs website. Mr. Arthur has a $17 price target.

New York Times, at around $8, looks appealing, based on a sum-of-the-parts analysis that factors in its ownership of the website, along with the Boston Globe, some regional newspapers and a 16% stake in the Boston Red Sox and that team's regional sports network. When these assets are taken into consideration, investors may be paying little for the Times' flagship paper. Bulls see the stock hitting $10, where it traded earlier this year.

Read the article

BJ wins Cleveland Press Club awards

The Beacon Journal's Bob Dyer, Phil Trexler, Bob Downing, Cheryl Powell, Stephanie Warsmith and the team of Jim Carney, Jim Mackinnon and David Knox won first place in Cleveland Press Club reporting awards.

Photography first places went to the BJ's Ed Suba Jr. and Karen Schiely.

There were other lesser awards for BJ staffers.

Click on the headline to see the entire story in the BJ.

Beacon Journal tribute to Linda Golz

By Katie Byard
Beacon Journal staff writer
Linda Golz, a Beacon Journal reporter who also reviewed letters to the editor, died Saturday afternoon.

Mrs. Golz, 61, suffered a brain hemorrhage while driving from the Beacon Journal to her Wadsworth home late Friday and died Saturday at Akron General Medical Center.

Mrs. Golz hit another car and when police arrived, she reported that she thought she had suffered a stroke, according to her husband, Mike Golz. There were no other injuries, Golz said.

Beacon Journal Metro Editor Rich Desrosiers said Mrs. Golz had moved from the newspaper's library, where she was a library researcher, to her current job in 2007.

She worked at night, splitting her time between the editorial section and the newsroom.

She enjoyed her new role, which included going out on assignments and making nightly calls to area police and fire departments.

Mrs. Golz, ''knew many of the dispatchers by name,'' Desrosiers said.

''She just loved to meet people.''

Mike Golz agreed.

''She just really enjoyed people . . . telling people's stories,'' he said.

He said his wife ''was one of the rare people who has had a lot of truly good friends. She had a whole bunch of best friends.''

Mrs. Golz's daughter, Carrie Frederick, said her mother ''was very giving, not only to her family and friends, but to strangers and other people in her community.''

Mrs. Golz began working for the Beacon as a correspondent in the late 1980s, covering various government meetings. Previously, she was a freelancer for area weekly and other local newspapers.

She became a Beacon employee in the early 1990s, working as a part-time library researcher. She was hired full time in 2001 before becoming a Beacon staff writer in 2007.

Mrs. Golz, a native of Pontiac, Mich., graduated from high school in Waterford, Mich., before moving to Northeast Ohio in the early 1970s.

Mike Golz said his wife was proud to be working as a professional journalist, even though she had no college degree. ''She did it on her own with no formal education,'' he said.

Mrs. Golz's only son, Jeff Little, died in a car accident in 1991. In addition to her husband and daughter Carrie Frederick, she is survived by daughter Alyson Brickey of Wadsworth and stepdaughter Laurie (Erik) Eberhardt of Massillon.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

[Beacon Journal, Akron, OH, Monday, June 13, 2011, page B4, col. 4]

Sunday, June 12, 2011

BJ's Linda Golz dies at 61

 Linda Golz suffered a stroke on her way home from work at the Beacon Journal on Friday and died at the hospital, according to an email from managing editor Doug Oplinger.  Oplinger said her daughter called the newsroom and talked to Bob Downing. Lida was 61.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Wheels in Hugh Downing's town

Retired BJ printer Hugh Downing and wife Sharon live in The Villages, Florida.

The Villages was designed with 90 miles of golf cart paths for its residents to get to the shopping mall, the grocery stores, the restaurants, the hospital and, yes, to the golf course, although there are 50,000 golf carts and only 16,000 of The Villages' citizens play golf. The carts are customized -- for $6,000 to $20,000 apiece -- to look like hot rods, Mustangs, you name it.

Hugh may be in this video, but he wasn't named in the audio.

It you want to contact Hugh, his phone number is 352-259-7556 and his address is

Hugh Downing
17900 S.E. 87th Bourne Ave.
The Villages, FL 32159

I haven't been able to find an email address for Hugh or Sharon.

To check out the video and the myriad of golf cart looks, click on the headline.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Glenn Proctor starts new venture

Harry and Beacon Gang:
I guess I am too young or too ---- to relax. So, this is much next venture.
Glenn Proctor
Founder/Training Director
Leadership Training - Coaching - Motivational Products - Career Services
(goes live July 2011)
Personal contact: 804-678-8570

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Retired Record-Courier editor dies

Luella D. Cordier (nee Heupel), retired editor of the Record-Courier, beloved mother, grandmother, great-grandmother, sister, aunt and friend to many, passed away June 8, 2011.

Lou was born April 7, 1922 in Akron, the eldest daughter of Philip A. Heupel, Sr., and Julia Cole Heupel, about whom she wrote Out of Their Silence: A Memoir of Philip and Julia.

Luella was married to Albert T. Cordier of Mogadore for nearly 60 years before his death in September 2001. Lou was a graduate of Springfield High School and Kent State University's School of Journalism. She was editor of the Record-Courier and received numerous awards for her work as a journalist. Luella was a member of The Chapel and its choir for many years.

Lou was predeceased by her parents; husband; and brother, Philip Jr. She is survived by daughters, Nancy (Dick) Bauer, Suzanne (Frank) D'Annolfo, Kristine (George) Karnezis; and son, James (Betty) Cordier; 12 grandchildren; 17 great-grandchildren; sisters, Doris (Tom) Kot and Marie Dittebrand; brother, Ray (Judy) Heupel; many nieces, nephews and friends.

Funeral service will be held Monday, 10:30 a.m. at Hopkins Lawver Funeral Home, 34 S. Cleveland Avenue, Mogadore, Ohio 44260, with Pastor Jim Mitchell officiating. Burial at Greenwood Cemetery. Friends may call at the funeral home 5 to 8 p.m. Sunday. In lieu of flowers, contributions in Luella's memory may be made to Camp Carl c/o The Chapel, 135 Fir Hill, Akron, Ohio 44304, or, for a journalism scholarship, to the KSU Foundation, c/o Christine Isenberg, 131 Moulton Hall, Kent State University, Kent, Ohio 44240.
(Hopkins Lawver, MOGADORE, 330-733-6271)
[Akron Beacon Journal, Thursday, June 9, 2011, page B4, col. 4]

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Mark Schlueb email in spotlight again

Mark Schlueb's parting email at Knight-Ridder CEO Tony Ridder is the lead in Jack Shafer's article about snappy retorts on the way out the door of your ex-employer. In, Shafer quotes Schlueb's classic 2001 line, much in the manner of the huffy Ann Hill memo of Beacon Journal lore: "I would have loved to piss on your shoes."

Schlueb went to the Orlando Sentinel after his ouster from the BJ. He was laid off as BJ county government reporter 10 months after leaving his Daytona Beach News-Journal job and bringing his family to Akron

Click on the headline to read about what others wrote when their employers showed them the door.

To read Schlueb's email to Ridder, who rode K-R to its grave, click on Mark Schleub

Of loans, eye surgery, Africa

The talk at the monthly BJ Alums lunch at Papa Joe's restaurant included a major first loan, upcoming cataract surgery, a month-long visit to Africa and the "miracle" recovery from meningitis.

BJ Engraving retiree Pat Dougherty recalled the $4,200 loan he got from the Falls Catholic Credit Union from 1971-72 BJ State Desk reporter Paula Stone Tucker's dad, Paul. Pat bought a Volkswagen and a trailer home that he and wife Elizabeth lived in for 2 1/2 years -- behind the Midway Plaza shopping center off Brittain Road.

Paula's parents and Pat's parents were good friends for decades. Pat's dad was a BJ Engraver for years before Pat began working alongside his father at the Beacon. Pat's parents are deceased. Paula's parents Paul and Jane live in the Chambrel retirement complex in Montrose.

Pat is getting ready for cataract surgery on both eyes. Nearly everyone at today's lunch has had cataract surgery and expressed satisfaction with the results.

Pat's brother finally finished building an airplane inside his home, a project that took 2 1/2 years. He'll have to remove the wings temporarily to get the plane outside the building.

BJ Newsroom retiree Tom Moore said that he talked to former BJ sports editor Tom Giffen via Skype, the electronic contraption that lets you see the person on the phone. Giffen and his wife are in Africa for a month. Giffen runs the Roy Hobbs World Series for older baseball players in Florida every year, and Moore handles the daily newsletter and other chores for Giffen.

Tom Moore and wife Dot have their Akron home to themselves, now that daughter Caroline Moore Krack has gone back to Minnesota with her husband, John Krack. Tom says physicians describe Carolina's recovery -- other than some weakness on the right side -- from meningitis and a coma as "a miracle." Caroline was stricken in January and has been staying with Tom and Dot since her release from Summa's care.

Click on the headline for earlier stories on Tom Moore's daughter, Caroline.

Besides Pat Doughterty and Tom Moore, others at the BJ Alums lunch were retired printers Carl Nelson, Gene McClelland and Al Hunsicker and newsroom retiree John Olesky. Only the March lunch, which drew seven, had more in attendance in the past nine months.

The BJ Alums lunch is at 1 p.m. the second Wednesday of every month in Papa Joe's Restaurant on Akron-Peninsula Road and adjacent to Portage Trail Extension. Current or former BJ employees and their friends are welcome to show up for the food and conversation.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

How are freelancers faring? Guild asks

The Newspaper Guild is conducting a survey to get a feel of how freelancers are faring today. Does it suck? Not so bad? Doing terrific, thank you very much? "We are seeking important feedback from people about ways organized labor could help improve the state of freelancing, whether it be print, video, blogging or photography,” a Guild official said. The Guild is asking freelancers to fill out its survey so it can use the results “to build a support system for those who remain committed to acts of journalism without the assurance of a steady paycheck.”

See the survey

Connie Bloom at Akron Art Museum Aug. 4

Former BJ staffer Connie Bloom, who has become something of a fabric art guru in Ohio circles, will give a talk and trunk show Aug. 4 at the Akron Art Museum's Downtown at Dusk series. 4. Her topic: "That's No Potholder Buster; How Contemporary Artists are Changing Public Perception About Quilts."

Connie also has been nominated as button artist for First Night Akron 2012, the annual New Year's Eve doings in downtown Akron.

Connie is publisher/editor of QSDS (Quilt Surface Design Symposium), a quarterly online publication. She has a studio at Summit Artspace, 140 E. Market Street in Akron. Her phone is (330)472-0161.

The photo shows Connie in 1965 as a Garfield High majorette.

Click on the headline to go to Connie's web site for more details on all this and more.

Coming soon: New newspaper size and shape

Ready for a radical redesign of your daily print newspaper? A new press system that would produce a compact, sectioned print edition has been on the market for nearly three years now.

So far, there have been no takers (and that’s a story in itself). But industry sources say that the considerable potential savings and punishing newsprint price increases will lead to the adoption of so-called “three-arounds” in at least a few places by the end of the year.

Jim Gore and Mark Huck of Pressline Services believe they have developed the pressroom equivalent of a better mousetrap and expressed plenty of frustration that the many nibbles from top companies had not resulted in a sale.

“We have a lot of people who say they want to go second,” Gore said, “but no one wants to be first.”

Click here
to read about it on Poynter Online

Click here to read Pressline’s explanation

Monday, June 06, 2011

Oops! D-Day no longer worth a mention

Retired BJ printer Cal Deshong, 92, brings up a startling point:

Harry and John.... Looks like the Beacon Journal forgot about D-Day.... June 6, 1944 ..... [cal]

For those too young to remember and who haven't read their history books lately:
D-Day was the largest amphibious invasion in world history, with more than 160,000 troops landing on 6 June 1944 along a 50-mile stretch of the Normandy area of France. 195,700 Allied naval and merchant navy personnel in more than 5,000 ships were involved.

More than 425,000 Allied and German troops were killed, wounded or went missing during the Battle of Normandy.

Actually, Cal, the BJ had a long Bob Downing story on D-Day, but that was on Sunday. No reminder on Monday.

Click on the headline for details of D-Day, which is a military term meaning the first day of an offensive.

Tom Moore's daughter goes back to Minnesota

Caroline Moore Krack in van that is taking her back to Minnesota

Our daughter Caroline and husband John came for a holiday visit at
Christmas time.

That visit lasted until today became of Carol's illness.

Today she climbed into their van and headed back to Minnesota.

That's thanks to all the thoughts and prayers for her recovery and of
course we have to thank the great care she received in the Summa health care system.

Dot and I are a bit sorry to see her go, but we're flying to Minnesota
soon, so we'll see her again there.


Caroline "Carrie" Moore Krack contracted meningitis and was in a coma for weeks. It's been a long road back, but now she's taken the road back to Minnesota.

Click on the headline for previous stories on Caroline/Carrie.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Add Kathy Fraze to BJ authors

Add Kathy Fraze to the list of Beacon Journal authors.

She has self-published six crime novels through Xlibris (Her son Bryan Larrick, also son of the late BJ staffer Bruce Larrick, does all the artwork).

When Mike Needs, once a BJ editor and honcho, heads back to California each year for his work with the Forest Service, Kathy posts a blog of “Letters from Louie” that chronicle the (mis)adventures of their dog.

New adventures start soon and prior years back to 2009 are archived as well.

Click on the headline to check Kathy's web site.

Click on "BJ Authors" under "Labels" on the left side of this page to see other stories on current or former Beacon people who wrote books.

Bit of freeze at BJ

The Beacon Journal is freezing vacation accrual for three months for non-union employees, one of them has advised this blog. The employee also complained the company had required them to use a week earlier this year.

Suburbanite to charge for web content

The Suburbanite, a weekly published in the city of Green in SummitCouunty, will begin charging to view some content on its website,

The move reflects the growth of the newspaper’s digital offerings over the years.

The Suburbanite is owned by Fairport, N.Y.-based GateHouse Media Inc. The publication is one of the first owned by the company to adopt a subscription model for its website.

Visitors to will get unlimited access to the website’s homepage, breaking news, obituaries, weather, and multimedia offerings, including photo galleries.

Other articles on the website, including those in the news, region, sports and lifestyle sections, will fall into a premium category.

After reading 20 premium articles, readers will be asked to pay a monthly subscription to gain unlimited access for the site.

Occasional visitors to the website probably won’t know the subscription system exists. Heavier users who visit the website several times a day and want premium content will find themselves having to pay for full access.

To get full access to, readers will be asked to pay $2.95 per month or $29.95 for an entire year. The annual subscription offers a discount worth two months of service.

See the announcement.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Louise Henry, 91, once wrote for BJ

Anne Louise Henry was born March 28, 1919 in Akron, Ohio to Axel and Christine Larson, who were both emigrants from Sweden. Louise always went by her middle name as did her husband, Rev. Wilbur Dean Henry. They married on December 26, 1944 and a snow storm the following day cancelled their plans for a Niagara Falls honeymoon. Louise lived her whole life in Akron until her move to Columbus Alzheimer Care Center in 2006. She died there on May 28, 2011.

She attended Coventry Township schools and graduated as valedictorian of her 1937 class. As a schoolgirl, she proudly delivered newspapers for the Akron Beacon Journal and briefly wrote for this paper too. After graduation, she worked for both Sun Oil and Seiberling Rubber Company as a secretary until her marriage.

Click on the headline to see all of Louise's obituary in the Beacon Journal.