Sunday, 1 February 2009

Calvin Reynolds

Calvin Reynolds is a Toronto Sun veteran who reluctantly begins his final week at the tabloid he loves on Monday.

Sources say barring a much deserved, but unlikely, last-minute reprieve from the Black Tuesday pink slip he received in December, Calvin will gone as of Feb. 10.

When you talk Toronto Sun Family, you're talking the Calvin Reynolds of the tabloid. Loyal to the hilt, a company man to the nth degree. Friendly, considerate, sincere in his feelings for colleagues.

All of the qualities you want in an employee, but it doesn't mean a hill of beans to PKP. And PKP doesn't mean a hill of beans to the majority of disheartened Sun vets these days.

The front door of the Toronto Sun has seen hundreds of saddened employees make their final exit since Quebecor bought Sun Media a decade ago. Good people with much more to give.

Calvin, a behind-the-scenes photo desk staffer and creator of the popular Brain Drain with Professor Calvin quiz in the Sunday Sun, has much more to give.

"Very typical of PK," a colleague tells TSF. "They are stripping away part of the glue and mortar (in letting Calvin exit.)"

Newspapers need people like Calvin. People who care and give a damn about people and the product.

The character of Calvin has shone brightly numerous times throughout the years, but it shone most for TSF in March of 2007.

Scott Stevenson, Calvin's longtime friend and Sun colleague laid off the previous November, was turning 50 and Calvin e-mailed to give TSF members the opportunity to wish Scott the best.

When there are farewell parties for layoff casualties, Calvin is among the organizers.

When Sheila Chidley, a longtime sports department sweetheart, took a buyout recently, Calvin used her photo in his Brain Drain quiz, his way of saying farewell.

With management's dismal track record in letting Sun vets go without a word of thanks in print, we're not too optimistic about a tribute for Calvin next week.

He deserves mention in the tabloid he has loved, as do other Sun contributors who will be bidding farewell to 333 in the next couple of weeks thanks to Black Tuesday and buyouts.

The gutting of 333 is all but complete. Six floors of enthusiastic, loyal employees from the glory years have been lobotomized. The presses have been silenced, as have the voices of the newsroom.

There are a few remaining columnists with the balls to write tributes for departing vets, but today's fearful editors tend to spike rather than stand up for their colleagues and friends.

Calvin, all the best in your next adventure.

cc Toronto Star, Globe and Mail, National Post et al

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