Congratulations to your appointment as Editor of the Cedar Key Beacon. We had been coming to Cedar Key for 50 years and many times spend more time there than we do at our home in St. Pete. We have subscribed to your excellent paper for many years.
There was a time when the writing of your paper was extraordinary. A local preacher, now retired had a weekly column that even we sinners read word for word. You had a young woman with children that occasionally wrote a column that was so funny that we would laugh out loud; but we recently cried when we heard of Van Proctor's death. His column Naked in the Street could make public servants in Tallahassee and Washington blush with shame. Mike Raftis, too would write topical columns inspiring his readers to keep their noses into the wind and to the right of center. Even his daughter Connie had columns about cats that caused one of our neighbors to subscribe. Thomas Ivines wrote a column that was always of interest to Florida outdoor lovers. We looked forward to his treasure hunts and small plane exploits around our beautiful Florida. Gene Benedict llooked for trouble in Cedar Key and elsewhere with a shy sweetness as if he was writing to family. We realized that he had trouble himself, with failing health and my wife lit candles for him at St. John's in Chiefland. He was physically about as ill as a man can be. Your paper has always had excellent articles about fishing and some of the writers covered incendiary times in Cedar Key where we heard both sides of the argument fairly presented. Cutting edge electronic innovations were explained right next to informative articles about herbs and spices by a local Ewell Gibbons aficionado,
We have mentioned the Cedar Key Beacon had exceptional writing. There were times where we shared tattered copies of your paper with Trustees of the Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Society and the word extraordinary was the reaction by one of the past Presidents. We know that death has silenced the typewriters of some of your finest writers but we would beg you to put up with the idiosyncrasies of what talent remains. Perhaps missed deadlines and archaic subjects can be overlooked. Cedar Key Beacon is not a big city newspaper and you must by now have realized that the frantic big city pace has slowed to a walk somewhere far east of the #24 bridge.
Good luck with your new guest columnists. We hope you no longer lose the quality of writing that once made your paper extraordinary.
Dave and Carol Grantges