Wade Young, Montgomery Messenger

Friday was a big day for the TCU seniors and their families.

They transitioned from high school students to Tri-City United alumni.

The youth might not realize it, but that’s a big transition. It marks the end of one part of their life and the beginning of another.

I’m sure their journey to graduation was a bumpy one. Being a senior during a global pandemic that brought hybrid learning, to distance learning, to hybrid learning then all-in learning made it unforgettable.

The Italians have a great expression for how our lives get upended when we least expect it: “lupus in fabula.” It means “the wolf in the fairy tale.” Just when life is going great, along comes a demon, a dragon, a diagnosis, a downsizing. Just when our fairy tale seems poised to come true, a big, scary thing threatens to destroy everything around it.

This demon came to our world last year when the entire planet had to confront the same wolf at the same time. The U.S. has lost more than 500,000 people to the wolf. People lost jobs. We sheltered in place and wore face masks to keep each other healthy.

This lifequake was huge, yet our resilient youth adapted to this transition and made it work. I applaud all of our TCU graduates for making it to graduation. You did it during a time of immense change.

Even if you don’t learn how to solve 4x+(3y+4)i=21+7i, or that an ionic bond occurs between copper and sulphate ions (for the record, I had to look up those examples), you learned another valuable skill: adaptation. That will serve you well in the life ahead.

At Suel Printing Co. that produces the Montgomery Messenger, The New Prague Times, LifeEnterprise, and Extra Shopper we had another transition.
Dennis Lambrecht, our production manager, is retiring as of June 4.

I’ve worked with Dennis since I started with the newspaper in 2000. At that time, we assembled the paper using pasteup (think: waxed paper articles put together like jigsaw pieces). Then we transitioned to all-computer pagination, which brought multiple versions of computer software.

After more than 50 years in the business, I wish Dennis well in his retirement and a future without alarm clocks. I hope the next stage of his life is fulfilling, fun and full of adventures.

News of Dennis’ retirement also brings another transition to our newspaper. Jennifer Leff is transitioning from part-time production to full-time production manager.

Congratulations to her! She does great work for us, and I wish her all the best too!

Whether you’re graduating high school, or heading to retirement, transitions can be good or bad. It’s all how you handle them.


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