The Bolivar Commercial will always have special place in my heart
This is hard. This is very hard.
I still can’t believe this is the last edition of The Bolivar Commercial. When I think about how much this place has meant to me, the memories immediately flood my mind.
For 21 years, nine months and 23 days, this has been more than a place of employment, it’s been where I got my start, developed my skills but more importantly found a second home and a true extended family. I’ve struggled with the idea of naming all the people that were great to me at this place, but I just can’t. That would take too much room, and I don’t want to leave anyone out. There are many, many people I’ve worked with that I consider lifelong friends. In my time at the BC if something was going on in my life whether it was a wedding, funeral or any type of crisis, my BC family was there to support me.
Along with being kind people, they are very talented. When you walked in the newsroom and saw those awards, it spoke volumes. It’s great to step foot into a place and look at the people in every department and know you’re on an elite all-star team. Coming up as a young sports writer many moons ago, I wanted to be up on the wall with my colleagues.
It takes hard work and talent to make a paper run, and this paper had those key ingredients for 104 years. I’m thankful I got a chance to be a part of it. It’s been an honor to work on the newspaper that’s been the paper of record for Bolivar County.
As far as the job, I’ve loved covering the events. It’s wonderful to have a job where the things you cover help tell a team’s story, a school’s story or a person’s life story. It’s been a labor of love when I’ve gotten to write a piece or a series that’s been informative and helpful to people that are involved in something mentioned in the piece.
The excitement of covering high school, junior high and youth league sports is second to none. I’ve loved watching these young boys and girls succeed and get better every time out. At this level, this is where the game is always at purest. These young kids play for the love of it, and it’s been a pleasure to watch these young athletes grow up and turn into fine adults. It’s particularly special when you’re watching a young player that is among if not the best in the state. The joy of winning and the sadness of defeat are all examples of the emotions they feel when they give it everything they have. It’s been a thrill to document these events. I’ve enjoyed working with the schools, coaches and administrators as well the park directors and every one involved in youth sports.
It’s been a joy to cover Delta State University Athletics. The players and coaches always give it their best every time out. I can honestly say there have been times where the best collegiate player in the state, no matter which sport, at one time or another has played for Delta State. I know those C Spire Awards are given mainly to the D1 players, but we know DSU should have been able to bring more of that hardware home. Along with the players and coaches, I’ve loved working with the administrators, faculty and staff. DSU is a great place for sports and education.
I’ve enjoyed every minute of this. On behalf of myself and the rest of the staff here at The Bolivar Commercial, we just want to thank you for welcoming us at your events and letting us into your homes whether it’s being rolled up on your porch ready for you to pick up, placed in your mailbox or in full view on your computer screen as you’ve found us while surfing the net. Reporting the news and documenting the history of the area has been a privilege.
I hold this paper and this community near and dear to my heart. Thanks for the memories. I will cherish them forever.
Andy Collier is the last sports editor of The Bolivar Commercial