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Walter Wick, who helped grow family newspaper company, dies

In this September 2015 photo, Bob Wick, left, with his brother, Walter Wick pose for a photo with an issue of the Sierra Vista Herald in Arizona. Walter Wick the former publisher of Arizona's Sierra Vista Herald, who with his brother grew Wick Communications into a media company with publications in 11 states, has died.
Mark Levy/Sierra Vista Herald via AP

In this September 2015 photo, Bob Wick, left, with his brother, Walter Wick pose for a photo with an issue of the Sierra Vista Herald in Arizona. Walter Wick the former publisher of Arizona's Sierra Vista Herald, who with his brother grew Wick Communications into a media company with publications in 11 states, has died.

SIERRA VISTA, Ariz. (AP) — The former publisher of Arizona's Sierra Vista Herald, who with his brother grew Wick Communications into a media company with publications in 11 states, has died.

Walter M. Wick died Christmas morning at his home in Hereford. He was 85 and had pancreatic cancer.

Wick was a member of the Arizona Newspaper Association Hall of Fame and was publisher emeritus of the Herald and the Bisbee Daily Review newspapers.

Walter Wick and his brother, Robert, bought their uncle's interest in the company in 1965. They took over full ownership when their father died in 1981.

Their father, Milton Wick, and uncle, James, founded the company when they acquired the family's first newspaper in 1926 in Niles, Ohio.

Robert Wick told the Herald that he was "as blessed as any brother could be with Walter's presence in my life."

"We at times had our differences but we each knew our love transcended all problems," Robert Wick said Tuesday. "In my life this great soul is passed but his reverberation will ripple throughout all those who have known him."

Wick Communications is based in Sierra Vista, Arizona, and also publishes newspapers in Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Louisiana, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon and South Dakota.

Family members still run the company, with Walter's daughter, Rebecca Rogers, serving on the company's board of directors and nephew Francis Wick serving as the president and CEO. Daughter Pat Wick is the assistant general manager at the Herald/Review.

Wick was born in Youngstown, Ohio, on Feb. 4, 1931, and grew up in Niles, Ohio, before attending Kent State University and the University of Minnesota. He began his newspaper career as publisher of the Niles Daily Times and later was publisher of the Williston (ND) Daily Herald. He moved to Sierra Vista in 1974 and became publisher of the Herald. He and his brother were co-chairmen of Wick News, Inc. for many years.

In addition to his two daughters and brother, Wick is survived by his second wife, Beverly, sons Robin, Jonathan and Christopher, daughter Martha and numerous grandchildren. A son, Thomas, died at age 16 in 1973 and his former wife, Joyce Wick, died in 2002.

Services are set for Jan. 6 in Sierra Vista.

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