It’s hard to believe that I started writing for The Herald back in 2003. For the past 18 years, I’ve been telling the stories of Newfoundlanders and Labradorians and sharing a scatter yarn about my own life along the way.
While I was a freelance contributor those first few years, even if we say I only told one story a week inside these hallowed pages, then I’ve at least shared the stories of 936 of my fellow countrymen and women.
I’VE BEEN BLESSED
The reality is, there’s been thousands that have shared their stories with The Herald through my ear and keyboard over the decades and I’ve been blessed to watch so many I’ve met go on to do amazing things.
Children out raising funds for a good cause have graduated high school, then university. Because they remembered chatting when they were younger, they’ve reach out and filled me in on their grand goings-on. I’ve written stories on multiples born to excited parents only to see one of those wee babies, now all grown up, shake my hand as an adult when we randomly ran into one another.
I’ve been hugged a decade later by someone I did a story on after a tragedy at sea hit them hard, and I’ve been called at home and filled in on a family milestone from a child who had the odds stacked against them while growing up.
Folks, it’s been my pleasure. But the only reason I get the honour of doing what I do is because of Geoff, and now Scott, Stirling. Geoff created The Herald, and his vision was clear. Newfoundlanders and their stories are worthy of telling, and his son Scott wields the same sword.
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Every one of us is the star of our own movie called life, as Geoff taught, and The Herald is the platform on which we celebrate our glories and achievements.
The traditions this publication holds dear are still just as exciting to participate in each and every year. I’m just as pumped putting together my 19th-anniversary edition of Elvis and Diana as I was when I began working on my very first copy. As for those haunting tribute covers we’re known for?
Ron Hynes. Robin Williams. John Crosbie. Each edition forever etched into my memory as we scrambled a mid-week change to pay tribute to the loss.
SALT IN MY BLOOD
Does any edition stand out for me? The one we did after the loss of our founder, Geoff Stirling, does.
It was as if our hands were being guided, and I suppose they were. That one will never be forgotten.
There was one on women in the fishery that made me particularly proud, too. Just profiling those powerful, strong, hardworking Newfoundland females made me glow as the salt in my blood fired me up as I sat at my keyboard. I am a fisherman’s daughter, after all. But there’s been so much to be proud of.
It doesn’t matter if I’m writing about Santa, Jesus, Elvis, Diana, Ron Hynes or little Jimmy or Jane in Joe Batt’s Arm – each and every story becomes a compelling part of the 75 years of tradition of The Newfoundland Herald. And that never, ever gets old.
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