OLD PHOTOS: Working with three of my journalistic heroes from the 1970s, Bob Berg, Don Hoenshell and Tom Ochiltree
I'm sure that there aren't many who remember Panax Newspapers which was based out of Williamston, Michigan and started by an entrepreneur named John McGoff. He started with a handful of daily and weekly newspapers in the state and turned it into a media company with a worldwide reach.
For a few years, I worked in their State Capitol Bureau in Lansing. Because communications technology in the early 1970s was limited to a telephone back then, our product was mainly columns where the time element had a longer shelf life.
During that time I worked with some incredible reporters at the company. Bob Berg was the bureau chief. He was the former bureau chief for United Press International at the Capitol and then went to Panax and from there became press secretary to Detroit Mayor Coleman Young. He was a great teacher and friend.
Don Hoenshell was the news director for the company. He knew journalism and he loved reporting and writing. He always treated those younger than him with respect. He freely shared what he knew.
In Washington, D.C. was Tom Ochiltree who was an old school journalist who was there when Russian President Nikita Krushev took off his shoe and pounded the table with it during a meeting with Richard Nixon. He was filled with stories while having an insatiable curiosity.