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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, June 6, 2010

From our readers, a fond farewell


For nearly a third of the life of The Honolulu Advertiser — 49 years, to be exact — its art editor, Jerry Chong, was there to illustrate and bring to life most of the history-making stories of the 20th century.

Jerry started with the paper in 1922 and, until his retirement in 1971, graphically described the stories The Advertiser so proudly and admirably described, including the Great Depression, the attack on Pearl Harbor, the valor of the 442nd, the arrival of statehood, the Korean War and the political and cultural changing of the guard over the decades.

Not only did Jerry bring visual life to major stories, but his illustrations graphically brought humor and insight to the human condition and a local perspective to all things Hawaiian during his era at The Advertiser.

His family and friends are justifiably proud of his contributions to the community and to the success and longevity of The Honolulu Advertiser.

Aloha and mahalo to The Advertiser for all it has contributed to our Hawaii for 154 years. We will miss you.

Gerald Chong
Los Angeles


I've enjoyed drinking my Thai tea and reading The Honolulu Advertiser in the early mornings for many years. As a surfer I want to thank you for your faithfulness in reporting and writing articles on surfing in Hawaii. I believe surfing is one of Hawaii's greatest gifts to the world. Thanks for promoting the sport.

We're finding that surfers are a great resource to serve and give back to our local island communities. Thanks for helping make that possible and getting the word out. The Honolulu Advertiser will be missed by many surfers.

Tom Bauer
Founder and director, Surfing the Nations-Wahiawā


Everything about The Advertiser has always been first class, from the always on time (well before the crack of dawn, rain or shine) delivery to the many opportunities to be part of the news process.

I had the wonderful experience to be part of The Advertiser's Community Editorial Board many years ago. Those hours spent with the staff offered us the opportunity to learn, and ask many questions. We were encouraged to share our thoughts and opinions on a myriad of issues, and our feedback was utilized in shaping several editorials.

It was a pleasure to spend time with Saundra Keyes, Jeanne Mariani -Belding, Jerry Burris, Stacy Berry and Dick Adair. All were incredibly passionate about reporting the news, and ensuring all voices were heard.

It's been a wonderful ride — Thank you!

Helen Gibson Ahn


It is ironic that as your sun sets, so does mine. As I set to leave the Islands for good in a few days, you will stop your printing presses.

I have been reading your paper religiously for the last 30 years. I may be old-fashioned, but nothing can replace a newspaper that I can physically open and read from the top left corner to the bottom right corner.

As times change and the traditional newspaper becomes endangered, I can only hope that the remnants of the current as well as next generation will realize the value of a newspaper.

I just wanted to send this off to say that I have enjoyed every paper I have gotten (or not gotten because someone stole it!).

Thank you.

Janette N. Freeman


The Advertiser acquired a diamond in the rough when it hired Bob Krauss for $65 a week in 1951. Eventually, editor Ray Coll Sr. assigned Bob to write an around-the-town column.

Bob admitted: "I stumbled on a way to trick people into reading it. While hardly anybody will give a writer credit for having an ounce of intelligence, it is no trouble at all to gain a reputation for being ridiculous."

Bob's column was a must-read. His stories delighted and amused all Hawaii. He was witty, adventurous, outrageous, naughty and nice.

The Advertiser published Bob's final article on Aug. 27, 2006. His words are endearing now as they were then. He wrote:

"Writing stories permits me to talk to anybody. In multicultural Hawaii, that's marvelously exciting because each person is unique. It's a constant adventure. My job puts me right in the middle of the evolving identity of Honolulu."

Bob dedicated his book, "Our Hawaii," to The Advertiser staff. He described them as "the most talented, hard working, fiercely individualistic and closely knit family of writers, editors, photographers, artists, and support staff in the Pacific."

Ditto! Mahalo nui for the stories and memories.

Bobbie Pidot-guffey


I was a paperboy in the early '60s. I delivered both the morning Advertiser and the evening Star-Bulletin in Foster Village across from Radford High School.

At first I delivered on my bike with those high handlebars to carry the canvas bag, then from the back of a 1959 Plymouth station wagon. My sister Janet would drive, my brother Paul would roll and rubber band and I would aim for the porch and pitch from the tailgate.

We bought our first foam and fiberglass surfboards from the money we earned. The old Plymouth wagon doubled as our surfer beach wagon.

I remember my father teasing me about going to Disneyland on my honeymoon. The paper had a paperboy subscription contest with first prize, a trip to Disneyland. I started halfway into the contest; I won, along with another guy. We got our pictures in the paper and I showed my dad I could get there on my own efforts. I think I was about 13-14, maybe 1963-4, been a long time.

David "chris" Kromer
Ala Wai Boat Harbor


"Long, long ago in a galaxy" near to here — The Advertiser building — I worked my way through college as a full-time "cub" (beginning) reporter for The Honolulu Advertiser in the early 1960s.

Now that I've been an attorney and a law professor at Hawaii Pacific University for several decades, my now-grown, part-Hawaiian "kids" can't believe their eyes when I bring out my old newspaper clippings with my byline on them.

I was there when the Rev. Abraham Akaka led a torchlight protest march against the Hawaii Land Reform Act. I was there when news clanked across the teletype machine that North Vietnam had allegedly attacked two U.S. vessels in the Gulf of Tonkin — now viewed as the start of escalation in the Vietnam War.

Thank you very much — mahalo nui loa — Honolulu Advertiser, for allowing me to be a witness to history! Godspeed and "Aloha Oe To Thee!"

Melvin (mel) Masuda
Associate professor of law, Hawaii Pacific University


The Honolulu Advertiser will always be a reminder of my first job delivering papers in the early morning hours on a route in Kaimukī. Deliveries were made by walking up the hills of Wilhelmina Rise and consisted of less than a hundred customers. Collecting the monthly fees eventually led to earning enough to buy a new bicycle and later to pay for tuition and books at the University of Hawaii.

Sunday morning deliveries meant a heavier load with the larger edition. It was also Sunday, Dec. 7, 1941 when the circulation manager, who brought our papers, told us that deliveries would be late because of a problem with the printing press. Eventually the papers arrived but without anything describing the events that were occurring at Pearl Harbor. Memories of the old press came back when I attended the dedication of the new facility at Kapolei.

The final edition of The Advertiser is a sign of the end of delivery by kids to be replaced by electronic news.

Owen Miyamoto


I am saddened to hear that the last issue of The Honolulu Advertiser will be delivered today. It has been my personal vital link to the events of the world for most of my life. Also, my fondest memories are that of my mother reading The Advertiser each morning to keep abreast of the latest news. She passed away exactly two years ago and I still miss her dearly.

Although not exactly the same, I will also miss The Advertiser, which has been a longtime daily companion through the years. Mahalo to all the faithful editors, news writers, graphics people, photographers and the rest of the staff who have given so much of themselves to bring the world and local news to the rest of us. May God bless you and guide you all as you pursue other endeavors.

Jennifer Campbell


Weekdays spent listening to J. Akuhead Pupule on the radio in the morning and reading The Honolulu Advertiser and the Hilo Tribune-Herald after school in Hilo were a treat for a five-year-old more than 60 years ago.

The Honolulu Advertiser's front page news, the comics with Dick Tracy and his two-way wristwatch with a video screen, Eddie Sherman, Bob Krauss and the Sports section with the box scores and the Red McQueen column. And I must mention looking forward during intermediate school years to occasional articles by cousin Arlene Ho.

The sound of The Advertiser hitting our driveway has been a welcoming way to start the day.

Michael Chun


In a few days, Honolulu will become a one-paper town. To say that I'm disappointed is an understatement.

Ever since my high school and college journalism days at Pearl City and UH-Mānoa, I have relied on The Honolulu Advertiser as a source of excellent journalism.

Quite a few of our Ka Leo alumni wrote and edited for The Advertiser. Many of them are still with the paper. And many of them, in just a few days, will no longer have the daily deadlines to meet.

Your dedication to providing solid, informative and relevant articles and editorials is appreciated and will be missed.

Best wishes to you all.

K. Mark Takai
1990 Editor in chief, Ka Leo O Hawaii


It seems that The Honolulu Advertiser has always been a part of my life, and knowing that this issue says "farewell" saddens me greatly. Over the years, my family and I have often looked to The Advertiser for fair, balanced coverage on many diverse subjects, including education, local events and even fashion. The Advertiser is truly a pillar in Hawaii media, and I am always impressed by the dedication of its staff and the quality of each issue. Last year, when one of my stories was published through the "Our Schools" feature, I was so proud to be involved, if only temporarily, with such a great newspaper.

The Advertiser also holds a special place in my heart because of the National Spelling Bee. Through The Advertiser's sponsorship, I was able to travel to Washington, D.C. to compete in this event in seventh and eighth grades. I am so thankful to The Advertiser for helping create my wonderful experiences at the Bee.

Thank you, Advertiser staff, for making this paper so wonderful.

You will be much missed.

Jasmine Kaneshiro
Ewa Beach


It is with profound sadness that I and, I believe, the entire community, mourns the passing of The Honolulu Advertiser. For the past 35 years, I have had the privilege of representing The Advertiser in all of its First Amendment matters, including access to courts and government records, defending subpoenas, getting a journalist shield law passed, and reviewing investigative pieces that reported on some of the most important stories of the past four decades.

I don't believe it can be seriously disputed that The Advertiser led the way in fighting for freedom of the press in Hawai'i, keeping government officials on their toes and defeating efforts to keep secret government ineptitude and, on occasion, malfeasance.

No governor, mayor, council or administration was immune to The Advertiser's commitment to open government and the right of the public to know and be informed. No prosecutor nor defense attorney withstood the paper's efforts to protect sources and the ability of its reporters to report fairly and accurately the important stories of the day.

From Twigg-Smith to Chaplin, Buchwach, Keir, Gatti and Platte, The Advertiser has served our community well, not only in its journalistic efforts, but as one of the non-profit community's biggest supporters. Ihope the Star-Advertiser can and will carry on the Advertiser's legacy.

Jeffrey S. Portnoy


I went to work as a reporter for The Advertiser in 1974. It was a great time to be a newsman. The city editor was Sandy Zalburg, a gruff, no-nonsense sort of guy who knew the town inside out and enjoyed reading Fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Language for pleasure.

There was Gene Hunter, a top-notch investigative reporter who could sit at a typewriter and quickly bang out a clear, crisp and accurate story. And there was Terry McMurray, who was finicky about even the smallest fact, an important trait for the best police reporter who ever covered the beat.

It was a newsroom of colorful, eccentric, dedicated reporters and editors who pounded the pavement and spent a lot of time getting a lot of information straight so that the readers would know what was going on. Today, some call this old-fashioned, and say that the public's interest runs more to traffic and weather than the machinations at City Hall.

But there's a lot of news out there that people didn't know they were interested in until they read it in The Advertiser. Kukui Plaza was just a redevelopment project downtown until Jim Dooley dug up the facts of political skullduggery there. Organized crime in Hawai'i was a Hollywood invention until Gene Hunter gave readers a full report on the underworld. Judges slammed courtroom doors shut until The Advertiser fought to pry them open.

There are still many stories to tell out there, but, after 154 years, The Advertiser won't be around to tell them.

Gerald Kato


We are sisters in our mid-80's. On Kauai, our father subscribed to The Advertiser back when we were toddlers. It arrived by boat in those days as there were no airplanes then. We are not sure if it was delivered three times a week, but do remember that it was generally accompanied by the Saturday Evening Post. My sister even recalls the Līhue P.O. box.

When we moved to Hilo, The Advertiser followed us.

We both have had The Advertiser delivered daily, which we have enjoyed over the years. Life goes on!

Elsie M. Barton Andcharlotte Jackson