Norman Schwarzkopf passed away, and York County didn’t have much to say

When former General Norman Schwarzkopf passed away on Dec. 27, it was suggested to me by my boss that I put out a post on the York Daily Record’s Facebook page to see if there were any local Gulf War veterans who remembered the man.

In this June 8, 1991, photo, Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf, left, and President George H.W. Bush watch the National Victory Parade from the viewing stand in Washington. Schwarzkopf led his troops in the parade, and then joined Bush in the reviewing stand. Schwarzkopf died Thursday, Dec. 27, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. He was 78. (Associated Press Photo/Ron Edmonds)

The ultimate goal was to gather enough of a response to whip up a story and throw it on our website, what the Night News and Digital Desk refers to as a “quick hit.” It’s what we do, and is a fun, fast-paced form of journalism that emphasizes precisely what our company is titled; Digital First Media.

I made the post in the early morning hours of Dec. 28. Then I waited.

I waited Dec. 28 through Dec. 30. I waited New Year’s Eve until today.

Three likes. No shares. No comments.

Evidently no one around here cares much about Gen. Schwarzkopf. At least not enough to comment on his passing at the age of 78.

Our Facebook page is usually packed with comments, likes and shares. I figured after a notable military figure like Stormin’ Norman passed away, people would have something to say about him.

But no. The post was viewed 2,422 times and received a mere three likes. Perhaps he had his several moments of fame in the 1990s and then simply sunk back into obscurity.

It was the lead stripped across the top of the Daily Record’s A-1 on Dec. 28, but garnered what we refer to as a “crickets” response in the public domain.

As a 25-year-old, I’ll admit I know little about the man. But I was at least able to recognize his name when the USA Today alert buzzed on my iPhone. I announced it to my desk and we quickly altered our plans for the next day’s paper.

Just so the man isn’t totally forgotten, a biography of the decorated general can be accessed here.

May he rest in peace, especially as far as York County is concerned.

This entry was posted in Behind the scenes, Community engagement, Daily news budget, Digital first, Newsroom conversations, Social media and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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