Like most Press Herald readers, I was caught off guard by Greg Kesich’s retirement. Unlike most conservative Press Herald readers, I am personally saddened by the news, not because I know Greg as a friend – we’ve only met twice – and certainly not because of his politics.

Ours has been mostly an e-mail relationship, built around my over a dozen Maine Voices and Letters to the Editor submissions over the past many years. Just as his are to me, my politics are to him like fingernails on a chalkboard, yet Greg published almost all of my submissions, which to conservative Press Herald readers were like oases in the desert. Their e-mails to me were usually highly critical of Greg and the paper, which they view as a “liberal rag,” and often spoke of cancelling subscriptions. My response was always that Greg, although politically misguided, is a good fellow who has always treated me fairly, and that you win the war of ideas by engaging – not by retreating from the battlefield.

Both of us now being former editors will be our second commonality, the first being our Serbian heritage. Folks whose ancestors enjoy the ignominy of having started World War I need to stick together, and perhaps even become friends, and so I hope that Greg can kick off his retirement by honoring his pledge to visit for a garden tour and homemade pie. Then I’ll get to work on making him a conservative.

Charles Todorich
South Portland

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