A Newspaper Can Save Your Life—But Maybe Not in Washington

By Jack Limpert

The Washington Post had a nice story yesterday headlined “Perk of having a newspaper subscription. It can save your life.”

The story’s lede: “Ben Morris wasn’t supposed to be out delivering papers that morning. But because he was, a 77-year-old grandmother is still alive.”

Morris, a circulation manager for the Star-Tribune in Casper, Wyoming, was filling in on a newspaper route. When he reached the home of Edith Brekken, he saw her lying face down on her front porch. He called 911, and doctors told him that Brekken would have died in the next 30 minutes if he hadn’t rescued her.

I’ve subscribed to the Washington Post for almost 50 years. Until about 15 years ago, it was delivered by a neighborhood paperboy—or girl. The last one was Nicole—she walked the paper route with her golden retriever. On rainy mornings she’d walk up the front walk and put the paper by the front door so I wouldn’t get wet. I’m sure she’d have called 911.

Now the paper is thrown from a black SUV that races up and down the street. The paper is out by the curb, sometimes in the street, no matter what the weather, and I’m skeptical the driver is checking our front porch.

The Washington Post and a cup of coffee is a nice way to start the day but it’s not the same without the neighborhood feel of Nicole and her golden retriever.

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