A bittersweet farewell to a life-changing journey

By Bethany Reinhart

For the past year, it has been my distinct pleasure to serve in the position of editor-in-chief at the award-winning Columbia Chronicle. I have had the honor of leading our team through the rollercoaster ride that is the newspaper business. I watched with pride when our team brought home 28 Illinois College Press Association awards, the most in the history of The Chronicle. I’ve experienced the joy of watching our team grow, both together and individually. I’ve felt the thrill of rushing to the newsstands every Monday morning for 30 weeks, just to get my hands on the final product our team produced.  My time as editor-in-chief of The Chronicle has been an incredible experience and a journey that has taught me more than any class offered at Columbia. This is truly the best job I’ve ever had. However, my success and the success of my team would not have been possible without the people who’ve shown me unwavering support throughout the past year. I’d like to extend my most sincere gratitude to those who’ve supported and influenced me this year and take a moment to thank a handful of them individually.

Mom and Dad: Thank you for everything you’ve done for me. Mom, you were always there to answer the phone at 1 a.m. Dad, when I was still awake and needed to talk at 5 a.m., you were always there to continue the conversation and talk me off my ledge.  I’m sure I would have been committed to a mental institution long ago if not for the words of wisdom and encouragement you’ve both provided.

Chris Richert: There is absolutely no way I could have done this job without you. In fact, this paper would have folded a long time ago if not for you. You’ve been my sounding board, my punching bag, my advocate and my greatest believer. I hope people throughout the college know just how much you do, how many hats you wear and how invaluable you truly are. Thank you for always believing in me, even when I was an absolute menace to deal with. You never stopped believing in me, even when I’d lost all faith in myself. Through your belief, you gave me a gift that can never be repaid. All I can hope is that I am able to do the same for someone else in the future.

Jeff Lyon: You never cease to amaze me and you have taught me more than I ever imagined possible. Thank you for your continuous guidance, dedication to the paper, immense knowledge of the industry and support for what we do at The Chronicle. Along with debating with you about stories and headlines, I’ve had a great time getting to know the “personal side” of Jeff Lyon. It makes me smile every time you sneak out for Dairy Queen and I cannot help but laugh out loud when I think about you listening to rap music in your car. Welcome to the jungle … I mean The Chronicle.

My amazing staff: Thank you all for your utter devotion to our paper. Your commitment goes far beyond dedication. You made The Chronicle your second home. Each week you spent countless hours hunting down sources, writing amazing stories, making numerous rounds of edits, selling ads, taking photos and designing every portion of our publication. In order to be a success at The Chronicle you must have passion running through your veins. I saw that passion every week and I am incredibly proud to be part of such an amazing team. We get quite a bit of crap for being student journalists, but just remember, we are the No. 1 weekly collegiate newspaper in Illinois. Go

Team Chron!

Jo Cates: You had one heck of a terrible year but you never forgot about The Chronicle. You adopted me and most of my staff, provided tons of advice via text message or late-night conversations and always reminded me to keep fighting for what I believed in. Not to mention you make the best quiche lorraine in the world.

Vito Buonsante: It is a shame that you have terrible taste in news commentators, prefer Pepsi over Coke and that you like anchovies on your pizza, but aside from that, I suppose I will keep you. Each week you quietly read my articles without me asking. You gave me advice on how to handle myriad work-related problems and you supported me every step of the way. When I was frustrated and wanted to throw macaroni and cheese boxes, you calmly and patiently talked me through my stress. Thank you for loving this crazy journalist. You gave me a reason to leave the office and come home at night.  Ti amo, tesoro mio.

To all our readers, enjoy the last issue of this year’s Chronicle and stay tuned for next year. I am certain The Chronicle will continue to grow, reach new heights and build on the legacy that began years ago.