January 9, 2014
I never imagined it would end this way.
Here’s what I imagined instead: I would reach a certain age and decide to retire. I would make all the arrangements and set a date.
But here’s the twist: I would be less than truthful with my co-workers about the date. I would tell them I was actually leaving a month later. Then when the real date came along I could just quietly leave for the day — never to be seen again.
Why would I do such a thing? Truth be told, I likely wouldn’t. It’s just that I was hoping to fade off into the sunset at a time of my choosing and, mostly, avoid the emotional goodbyes to colleagues I have worked with through thick and thin for the past 20 years.
Now, with the closure of The Daily News, I am forced not only to hold back tears as I say goodbye to people who have been a part of my life for so long, but do so with the realization that these are talented journalists whose good work may never be seen again. With luck, some will find new jobs in journalism but many will move on to other fields, attracted by better pay and more stable careers. Their voices will be lost.
I knew I would be in for a rough ride right from the beginning of this career. Newspapers, after all, have been laying people off and going out of business for decades. But changing times doesn’t mean good journalism has to die. It may get harder to find the resources needed to produce it, but I hope there will always be people with the skill and determination to make it happen. May they never give up.