Donald ‘Gummer’ Spearman, who worked in the newspaper industry from 1939 until his retirement in 1986, has been inducted into the Ontario Community Newspaper Association’s Hall of Fame.
Born and raised in Dresden, Spearman was hired as a reporter for the Dresden News in May 1939 when he was only 17. He was eventually made editor, but when the opportunity arose in the late 1950s to start a new weekly newspaper in Huron County, he and his family left the area and moved to Hensall.
There, Spearman published The Hensall Observer but also started a printing business. Advertising support for the Observer started to dry up after a year, but the printing side of the business started to grow. Ironically, one of Spearman’s biggest customers was the Dresden Raceway, which required racing forms.
After a few years he and his family returned to Dresden where he operated the Observer Press for many years.
You can read more about Spearman’s career in journalism by clicking here.
Typically announced at the OCNA’s annual convention, which was cancelled by of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hall of Fame inductees have been announced on a rolling basis.