Time to say farewell Vicksburg
The reality finally hit as I was about to write what quite possibly could be my final column as a newspaper journalist.
This is it.
Friday will be my final day as editor of The Vicksburg Post. I’m headed back home to the Mississippi Coast to be closer to my immediate family. I’m blessed that both of my parents are still with us and the desire to spend more time with them as they progress through their “Golden Years” is very important to me.
That urge to be closer to family has become more important to me as I enter my mid-50s. An opportunity to return to the Mississippi Coast became available and now is the best time for me to make that move.
So how do you say farewell to the only career you’ve ever known and had since 1989? Thirty years of doing a job I’ve known I’ve wanted to do since I was 17. I’m not sure one can really say good-bye, but I can certainly reflect.
My journalism career has span the early years of typing on desktop computers to now being overtaken by technology.
But what has remained constant is the stories and writing about communities and people and keeping those people informed of what matters most to them — their community.
I began as a green-horn sports writer fresh out of Delta State University and rose through the ranks to spend 15 years as a sports editor in Picayune, a decade as an editor in Laurel and the last five years as editor in Oxford and Vicksburg.
Mississippi is my home. There’s no other place I’d rather live and have enjoyed bringing what I consider historical accounts of the activities from these communities.
Wherever I have been, I’ve always tried to do my job as fairly and as ethical as I possibly can. I can, and have been accused of a lot of things over the years, but my fairness and ethics have never been questioned, and that’s something I’m proud to say.
The numerous awards from my peers have been humbling, but without question, the calls or emails from readers is what matters to me as a journalist. To this day, I still have connections to people I have written about, many of them I consider friends.
The nearly two years I’ve spent in Vicksburg have been very enlightening. As a child, Vicksburg was a place to visit my aunt in the summer and get lost in history touring the historic homes, Old Court House Museum and of course, the Vicksburg National Military Park.
Over the weekend, I had to take one more drive through the military park and came across my favorite monument — Confederate Gen. Lloyd Tilgham holding the reins of his horse, saber in hand in a dramatic pose. That monument has fascinated me since I was a young boy running up the hill to stare in wonder.
But I’m so glad I’ve had the opportunity to learn more about Vicksburg, creating what I hope are lasting friendships. This is a wonderful community that is progressing in a positive direction and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for The River City.
But most of all, I want to thank each of you for welcoming me to your community and encourage you to continue to support your local newspaper. There are incredible people here at The Post doing an amazing job for this community.
Rob Sigler is editor of The Vicksburg Post. You may reach him at Rob.Sigler@VicksburgPost.com.