My father was a newspaper man. After managing three newspapers in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, where I was born, my dad became the editor of the Arizona Republic and the Phoenix Gazette. They were the morning and afternoon newspapers in Phoenix, Arizona, back when most large cities had both morning and afternoon papers. It was 1950.
After serving as the editor of the Republic and Gazette for two years, my dad went looking for a new opportunity. He was forty-two years old and married with five children.
In my memoir, Not Your Father’s America, I write about how my mother and father drove to California in search of a small newspaper they could buy. They drove from the top of California to the bottom, from Eureka, near Oregon, to Chula Vista, near the Mexican border, stopping in every little town and hamlet with a small independent newspaper that might be for sale. They found the El Cajon Valley News in East San Diego County, about thirty freeway minutes from the beach and an hour from Mexico. I know. Too bad about the beach. In one of California’s premiere beach towns, I guess the La Jolla Light wasn’t for sale.
Published on smerconish.com on May 5, 2023