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Remembering the captain of the ship

By: Jim Linsdau, Sports Editor
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It was with great sadness that I learned of the passing of Bill Brehm Sr., the founder of Brehm Communications, Inc., the parent company of Gold Country Media.
Although Bill Brehm Sr. was not as active in the business over the past few years due to health problems, like anyone of his stature, his presence in the company was always felt. For anyone who shared his passion for newspapers, one could not help but admire what he had accomplished.
I have a fond memory of Bill Brehm Sr., back when he and his wife, Mona, would come up from San Diego for GCM’s annual employee appreciation dinner party. I, and the woman who later became my wife, were on the dance floor dancing to a rather lively tune. As luck would have it, he and I collided.
He asked me who my boss was and I pointed her out to him. He told her to have me fired.
Of course, and fortunately, he was only kidding and I continued working up until my wife and I bought the Foresthill Messenger. While publishing that newspaper, I often thought about what Bill Brehm Sr. accomplished in building BCI. Having my own publication gave me a small glimpse of the dedication and resolve he must have had – and that goes for his wife as well.
All media are going through a lot of changes and uncertainties now, with the advent of the Internet and electronic communications. Although Bill Brehm Sr. is no longer at the helm, I think his influence will help guide us into calmer waters and for a specific reason.
Bill Brehm Sr.’s vision was based on his commitment to the community and the role that local media played in holding that bond together. That vision was capable of transcending the method of communication used and placed it squarely on the integrity of what we do.
There are still some rough seas yet to be navigated, requiring a concerted effort to stay the course.
But sailing through those troubled waters will be a little easier, thanks to the course charted by Bill Brehm Sr.
Farewell Bill Brehm Sr., God speed.
Jim Linsdau is sports editor of The Lincoln News Messenger and The Placer Herald.