Here’s wishing everybody a very Blessed Thanksgiving!
I hope this week is, and has been, filled with warm thoughts, family gatherings and genuine thanksgiving for how God has blessed your life.
Although “trouble and trials” are in everyone’s life, it is important to see the many reasons that exist to give thanks, not only on Thanksgiving Day, but every day.
Every day is Thanksgiving Day for me, regardless of what is happening that day, because I know the blessings in life far exceed the troubles. I also know that, when we are God’s children, He only wants the best for us because He loves us. That’s what I am most thankful for on this day and every day that I live. From the many cards, letters and emails that I receive from Tribune readers during the year, I know that feeling of “thanksgiving” is very present in the hearts and lives of so many people who live here or who are otherwise connected to Central Illinois.
• AS DETAILED in my “Viewpoint” column on page 3 of the print and online editions of the Decatur Tribune, our newspaper cargo van was a casualty of a slick bridge that caused problems for several motorists in keeping control of their vehicles. The accident occurred at about 6:30 a.m. last Wednesday (Nov. 16). It was below freezing and IDOT had not yet spread salt on that part of Route 121 northwest of Decatur.
As mentioned in the column, the cargo van was a total loss as a result of the crash and, fortunately, our driver was not injured and the van did not hit any other vehicle when the accident happened.
• AFTER knowing that the cargo van would have to be replaced, I searched all of the car lots in Decatur and the general area in search of a replacement van — and I didn’t find a single van, let alone a 3/4 ton extended van that we need! I have never seen car lots so empty of commercial vans — or even cars. I have since been told by a few other businessmen, who also use cargo vans in their business, that if they are able to find one, the prices on new and used cargo vans are extremely high!
• WE HAVE always done our own trucking from press to the post office every week in the over half century that I have owned this newspaper. This week’s print edition is the first one (except during a snow storm years ago that blocked every road in and out of Decatur) that hasn’t been trucked to the post office by us. We have arranged for our printer to truck the Tribunes from the press to the post office and that will continue in the foreseeable future.
We will still do the sorting, unloading, the newsstand routes, etc., but, considering both the cost and scarcity of vehicles in today’s marketplace, and the inflated cost of parts and gasoline, it may be more cost-effective to let another firm truck the Trib to the post office. We have always delivered the USPS copies of the Trib, that are mailed to our subscribers in Decatur and across the nation, to the Mound Road Post Office around mid-day on Wednesday. That schedule will still be maintained along with newsstands being stocked in early afternoon.
• I DON’T anticipate that our readers will notice any change in delivery to their home or business location since we will have each week’s edition at the post office at approximately the same time as when we were using our own cargo van to transport them there. Of course, this week our mail subscribers will receive their copies later than usual because Thursday is Thanksgiving Day and there is no mail — and that’s the day most area mail subscribers receive their copy.
• OBVIOUSLY, the past few years have been especially difficult for most businesses, whether the business is a restaurant or a newspaper. The cost of everything that people are using in their personal lives is certainly a major factor that businesses also have to deal with on a regular basis as the cost of operating keeps going up. Thanks to the support of our thousands of newspaper subscribers, advertisers, attorneys and others who stand with us, this newspaper continues to roll off of the press and head for the post office and newsstands each week.
I am certainly thankful for my dedicated staff members who have been with me for decades and their efforts to keep this newspaper going — and the patience and support of my wife and family in standing behind my work with this newspaper and in the community.
• MOST OF all I am thankful to God for continuing to bless this newspaper and its editor in a work that seems to me to be more of a mission than a career choice.
• NEXT WEEK, I will get back to City Beat news, including the city council candidates — and more.