Remembering a newspaper legend
More than a decade ago, I was trying to figure out what I was going to do while doing some sports reporting for The Madera Tribune on the side.
I got the message that publisher Chuck Doud wanted to speak to me. The paranoid version of myself started to come out. What did I do? Who did I make a mistake on? All the bad thoughts went through my head.
When I went into Chuck’s office that day, I was greeted with a smile so that put my nerves at ease. He told me he wanted me back. Not he, per se, but The Tribune. An opening gave Chuck the opportunity to bring me back after a five year absence as a secondary paginator and a sports reporter.
One of the things he told me at the meeting was, “I want you back. The old regime is gone. I want you back with us.” I remembered that and that quote changed my history.
I went from someone with some middling jobs to a full-time job doing what I enjoyed doing.
I’ve been at it ever since and I’ve always looked up to Chuck. I valued his opinions and rarely did we disagree. He had your back no matter what you went against. I learned early on, though, you don’t cross Chuck.
One of the things you didn’t want to do was lie to Chuck. Then, you got to see the angry Chuck. Angry Chuck didn’t come out very often, but when it did, you better stand back because flames were going to come out of that bowtie he wore.
I didn’t like to see ‘Angry’ Chuck and I’m glad to say I only saw it a couple of times in the past 15-plus years of working for him through three buildings.
I’m glad I had the opportunity to converse with Chuck everyday. I will miss him dearly. I will miss his advice. I will miss his wisdom. I will miss him coming to my office everyday getting ice or M&M’s. Those little interactions everyday were small, but very meaningful.
He hardly had a terse word to say about me. I was glad he came to me when he had questions or concerns about the Tribune.
He was/is a mentor to me without every saying he was. He has left a legacy with The Madera Tribune and I will spend the rest of my time at The Tribune doing what I can to keep his legacy alive in the newspaper.
What I know about the newspaper, I learned from Chuck. He never gave me any guidance on what I did in the sports section. He told me he trusted me entirely and gave me free reign. With that, the entire sports community should be thanking Chuck because if it wasn’t for his guidance and openness, the coverage wouldn’t have been the same.
I will miss Chuck very much. Going to his office to talk about what went into the paper was something I enjoyed.
He was wise, he was kind, he was gentle, but he could also be firm when he needed to. He has helped mold me into the person I am today and I don’t know where I would be without his guidance.
Rest in peace, Chuck. You will always be remembered. There will always be water for ice and candy in the machine.