Last week, it was made known that The Columbian would eliminate their Blazers coverage, meaning the release of one of our favorite beat writers, Erik Gundersen. Yesterday, Gundersen wrote his last article for them. His thoughtful analysis was always on-point and we know that his voice in the Blazers community cannot be replaced. We also know that it will not fall silent. Gundersen is a talent who will undoubtedly land on his feet to pursue bigger and better things.
I will no longer be working and/or posting things here. The Columbian is eliminating its original Blazers coverage and the blog will exist but it will mostly be idle. I will no longer be using the legendary @BlazerBanter twitter handle. It was a fun three seasons covering the team for the paper, which included the two most successful seasons since 2000.
I was told of my future last Wednesday and Friday, June 17, is my last day at The Columbian. I have the ominous distinction of being the last Blazers beat writer at The Columbian. It was an honor to follow in the footsteps great reporters like Candace Buckner, Matt Calkins, Brian Smith, Kenny Vance and Tom Vogt, just to name a few. When I first learned the news, I was blindsided and crushed. But as time has passed, I’m truly looking forward to what comes next. The warmth I’ve received from friends, colleagues and readers has truly made me realize how lucky I am.
To read his full farewell, click here.
On a personal note, I would like to add that Erik has always been kind and helpful to me. He guided me through my first media day a few years back and was a friendly presence at team practices. His departure from The Columbian came as disappointing news that reflects the hardships of this business.