Wednesday, September 14, 2005
Today marks the one-year anniversary of my son's death. As you can imagine, something of that magnitude has a profound effect on your life.
It makes you reflect about the direction your life is heading, those close to you and how you live your days here on earth.
So it is with a reluctant heart that I write what will be my final column here at the Daily Sun News. Starting next Wednesday I will be working in the library as a paraprofessional at Arthur H. Smith Elementary School in Grandview. At the same time, I will be going back to college to finish my degree to become a teacher. I am excited and a bit nervous about the new path my life will be taking.
I will miss journalism and I will greatly miss my friends at the Daily Sun News. But there comes a time when you have to do what is right for yourself and I feel this move will work for me and my family.
More than 10 years ago I worked in the pressroom at Central Washington Press, which prints the Daily Sun News and other newspapers in the Valley. At that time, I had a strong desire to be a journalist. As you can imagine, no one would give me a chance because my resume wasn't necessarily spectacular. But Scott Blanchard, a former editor at the Grandview Herald, gave me my first opportunity and my career just grew from there.
I always wanted to be a journalist, for a number of reasons. One is that I would always read the stories in larger newspapers and they never gave me the entire picture. They would tell a story, but not the entire story. So I was determined that when I became a reporter I would tell the story. I would tell what happened until the story was told. I always wanted to give the readers the feel as if they were at the meeting or the sporting event I was writing about.
The newspaper business is all about space. You have X amount of inches for this and for that. I think the guiding force, which boils down to dollars, is wrong because it really short changes the reader. I think the person who said less is more is a foolish guy. As less usually leaves people with more questions than answers.
Luckily, I have had some editors, who while although reluctant sometimes have let me implement my philosophy for story telling.
During my years in this business, I have always had the guiding philosophy of telling the truth. A person once told me that in this business if you open yourself to the readers, then they will be responsive to you. And I hope that is what I have done. The truth is the most powerful force in this valuable profession. Journalists hold a valuable, often nerve-racking place in society. Journalist are supposed to find the truth and tell the story. And I hope that is what I have done for you.
It has been my pleasure over the years to write stories about our community-I am a homegrown Sunnyside boy. I have immensely enjoyed writing stories about your children playing sports and to just be a part of everything that has been going on here. I will miss the friendships in this business that I have made over the years. But the time has arrived for me to now write my own story, to do what I need to for me and hopefully, I do so all before deadline.