Saturday, 12 March 2016

Memories of 333

Toronto Sun employees are packing their belongings for the move to Postmedia on March 25, ending 40-plus years of newspapering at 333 King St. E.

Sun employees moved from the Eclipse building into their new digs in May of 1975. At its peak, 333 had six floors of Sun employees, its own presses, a cafeteria and photo studio.

Current and former Toronto Sun employees who worked at 333 are invited to share their memories.

From Facebook

Errol Nazareth: I can't believe The Sun is moving out of 333. So many memories of working there are flooding back. I have to say this: Regardless what folks think of the paper - and I have criticized its stance on many issues many times - I was treated with complete respect when I worked there.

When Les Pyette hired me in the early 90s - thanks, Tom Godfrey - I was given an amazing opportunity ~ working as a general assignment reporter on weekends and writing what many have told me is that 'legendary Friday write about any artist I wanted and not once was I censored. And every news reporter I worked with was always ready to help me with a story if I needed it.

After being laid off, John Kryk brought me back to write the Friday column. And when I was desperately looking for work about 5 years back, Glen Garnett reached out to me and told me QMI Agency was looking for a writer.

I pass by 333 every day and it's going to take a while for the news to sink in. (Received) a fun plaque they gave me when I left. Jim Slotek...i'm looking at you!

Claire Bickley: I grew up in that newsroom, made lifelong friends and was blessed with colleagues and mentors who left an indelible mark in my life: Jeanie MacFarlane was my coach and rock from the day I began. It was my great, great fortune to work with Kathy Brooks. Before Jean Houghton I knew how to swear but not with style. Jerry Gladman, my extraordinary friend, I still hear your voice in my head.

I will always consider those years, those people and all of those adventures among the best years of my life. To every member of our Toronto Sun Family, every best wish on your path.

Ian Harvey: That's what I miss the most. I grew up there. I arrived as a 23 year old... got married, had kids, got divorced. The one constant were the people at 333. We fought, we argued, we laughed we partied and we worked and played hard.It was a wonderful time to be in the business. The sky seemed no limit. We went into the boards hard against the competition. We revelled in being the underdog.

How sad this industry has become but the bond between us remains.
Someone oughta study it for a Rotman School of Business case study.
I remember when Teachers or some other bankers bought into the paper, one of the things they said was they placed a value on the culture.

Pity that the bean counters eventually pissed that value away. 

John Fracassi: At my first job in the 1970s, i saw the end of the old fashioned presses and the introduction of the compugraphic. It was the end of one era. The sale of the Sun and the massive layoffs that ensued, was the end of another era.

This is sad because those who will continue this business of newspaper work will never experience the exhilaration, the excitement, the thrills, the fighting, the arguing, the ingenuity displayed by the people who wrote all those stories, took all those photos, put out all those wonderful newspapers (and sometimes scratching our heads wondering how we did it). 

We mark the end of an era. i am happy i was privileged to be there and experience it.

Wednesday, 9 March 2016

At 30 in 2015

Toronto Sun
At 30 - 2015

Jennifer Gough, 63 – January 1

Randy Thompson, 62 - April 27

David Ellis, 70 – August 22

William “Bill” Duff, 68 - August 28

Pauline Mason, 68 – September 5

Audrey Levtov, 82 - November 19