Newspaper Industry News

Longtime WV reporter, columnist dead at 82

Register-Herald photo Debbie Schwarz Simpson
Register-Herald photo
Debbie Schwarz Simpson

BECKLEY, W.Va. — Cherished by her community and respected by her colleagues in the fields of journalism and history, Debbie Schwarz Simpson — a newspaper reporter, columnist and author, who died Tuesday at age 82 in a Fredericksburg, Va., hospital — left an indelible impression on everyone she met.

Simpson’s journalism career stretched all the way back to 1950, when the White Sulphur Springs High School student scooped the pros to grab an interview with Vice President Alben W. Barkley that was picked up by The Associated Press.

From editing the high school’s newspaper, “The Fountain,” Simpson moved on to the University of Kentucky’s school of journalism, where, according to her longtime friend Sue King, “She won all kinds of accolades.”

After getting her degree, Simpson interviewed with the Baltimore Sun before deciding to return to her hometown and take a public relations job at The Greenbrier resort. “It was a good training ground,” she would later tell a Register-Herald reporter.

Asked to start a journalism program at her high school alma mater, Simpson taught English, journalism and history for two years before dropping back to substitute status in order to devote more time to her three children, Henry, Emily (known as “Sissy”) and Darin.

Her career as a newspaper correspondent began in 1957 when she began reporting for Beckley newspapers…

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

And get our latest content in your inbox

Invalid email address