Delivering bad news
This newspaper — and, by extension, you, its readers — suffered a loss last week when a traffic accident tragically claimed the life of a member of the paper’s extended family.
You probably never met him and wouldn’t recognize his name. But he touched your life and the paper’s — both literally and figuratively — every week.
Through good weather and bad, for almost as many years as we can recall, Carl Miller II, 65, of McPherson tirelessly delivered the entire press run of each week’s Record, Star-Journal, and Gazette-Bulletin to our mailing crew in Marion from a central plant we use in Hutchinson.
The few times when Carl wasn’t the one handling deliveries, papers could be two, three, even four hours late, making it difficult for our hard-working mailroom crew of Barb Creamer and Beverly Baldwin to get them to post offices and stores on time.
Barring circumstances beyond his control, Carl never was late. He invariably called five minutes before arriving to make sure we were ready, and he always was accommodating when we needed to adjust printing times in holiday weeks.
Carl was a character. He was a state champion at table tennis and a widely noted promoter of pickleball, a recreational paddle sport that combines elements of tennis, badminton, and pingpong (seemingly everything except actual pickles). He loved buying old houses at sheriff’s sales and fixing them up. He also worked temporarily as a census taker.
Each week, Carl’s hands were the first to touch your paper — reliably and lovingly. His name may be one you never knew, but you should have, as you would count yourself as blessed if you had. He will be missed.
— ERIC MEYER