The Jesup Citizen Herald Can’t Find the Right Buyer and Prints Its Final Edition

From a story on by Andy Milone headlined “Longtime Jesup newspaper ceases publishing after not finding the right buyer”:

The Jesup Citizen Herald weekly community newspaper was printed for the final time Dec. 29, its publisher, Kim Edward Adams, confirmed. That effectively ends a 122-year run, 43 of which have been under Adams’ leadership.

Its website,, while still active, includes a touching letter from Adams titled, “Saying goodbye to Jesup,” as well as access to recent obituaries, and contact information for him.

But Adams affirmed he has no intention of resurrecting the digital medium to include past articles. The easiest way to obtain past publications is by visiting the Jesup Public Library.

Adams, a newspaper enthusiast since college, said he and his longtime news partner, Robin Harms — who contributed to all facets of the newspaper, was a well-known columnist, and happens to be his ex-wife — ceased publishing the Citizen Herald for a few reasons.

Adams unexpectedly suffered a detached retina in his left eye that required surgery and was unable resume his workload because of difficulties with his vision.

In addition, Adams and Harms are in their 60s and are “really getting tired.” She was “overworked and overwhelmed” at a job he says often requires more than 12 hours a day.

In fact, he said, Harms gave notice a few years ago but still stuck with it.

“But we eventually came to an agreement that we would sell or close it by the end of the year,” he said.

An effort was made to sell the newspaper in the last several years — “far and away when it was most profitable” because of a decision in 2019 to sell the office, about a year before the COVID-19 pandemic, because most employees wanted to work remotely.

That eliminated significant overhead.

He talked with four to six interested buyers, but “most of them had no prior newspaper experience.”

“For any of those potential buyers to take it over in that short of time would have been insurmountable,” he said.

His business, Horizon Publishing Company, will continue operating its smaller newspapers, the Denver Forum weekly, which it owns, and the monthly Readlyn Chronicle, which is owned by the Readlyn Community Club.

The decision to shut down was “emotionally trying.” His heartfelt letter, more than 1,300 words, on the Jesup newspaper’s website only took him an hour and a half to write.

“I just sat down and did what has been typical for me the last 40 years,” he said. “When it all comes together in my head, then it’s time to write.”

The words rapidly flowed out onto the screen.

“Is this difficult? You bet it is. Are there regrets? Of course,” he wrote. “Beyond those things, fraught with emotion, is a sense of peace. A sense of fulfillment. A sense of contentment. A sense of pride at being able to serve this community for so, so many years.

“In March 1978, I showed up in Jesup, as the new publisher and co-owner with my brother, Bob (who remained in Denver as publisher and co-owner of the Denver Forum).

“Since then, it’s been a whirlwind of deadlines, photos to take, stories to write — sometimes corrections to make — ads to show to business people, books to read on the latest technologies, employees to train, trips to conventions to learn how to better serve the community. There have been business decisions — starting a portrait studio and photography business to use the skills I’d first learned for the newspaper. There have been hours in the darkroom, then a swift transformation to digital technology; and the early shift to computers for design and composition in 1986. So much change over so many years.”

But despite all the changes, there’s been a “sense of continuity.” He mentioned the past and current employees who played a significant role and his newspaper’s history, as well as what it all has meant to him.

He expressed gratitude to the supporters of the weekly over the years, including two subscribers who have read it for more than 60 years, as well as city employees and school officials who have given him their time.

Asked about his favorite story he’d written while covering Jesup, he said he was privileged to collaborate with Kathyrn “Kate” Koob, a U.S. diplomat and native of the area who was held captive for 442 days during the Iranian hostage crisis before being released Jan. 20, 1981.

Beginning in a van after she arrived at the Waterloo airport, “we talked, I don’t know how many hours, for like three or four weeks,” he said. “It was a huge undertaking, writing about what she experienced.”

Multiple stories would follow; however, they were “like the same story, just continued.”

With the additional free time, when not working to publish his smaller newspapers he hopes to continue traveling the world with his life partner, Dee Loecher.

As for the Jesup Citizen Herald, it is finished.

“At this age (68) I don’t have the energy anymore,” he said.

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