Farewell to the Westender—my first newspaper love

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A “West Ender” cover from April 1981, featuring Murray Pezim—the king of the Vancouver Stock Market.

On December 21 Vancouver’s Westender newspaper will publish its last issue; then this community weekly, with its 37-year continuous publishing history and a name that dates back to the late 1940s, will join the 38 newspapers that have closed in British Columbia between 2010 and 2016.

With one exception, all 38 closures have been due to cost-cutting and wheeling and dealing on the part of two B.C. newspaper chains: the Surrey-based Black Press Group and Glacier Media, run from offices in Vancouver.

One bit of horsetrading between the two chains occurred in 2013 when Black bought (and then closed) the Abbotsford-Mission Times and the Chilliwack Times from Glacier and Glacier bought the North Shore Outlook, Bowen Island Undercurrent, the South Delta Leader and the Westender from Black.

The Bowen Island…

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