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Citizen-Journal's rebirth brings back memories

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Posted Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2010

Arlington resident Libby Altwegg was sitting in traffic recently when something caught her eye and caused her to wonder.

"I saw some renovation downtown that was wrapped in burlap, appearing to be unveiled to the public at a later date. But I wanted to know what it was about. What is it? Why is it covered? When is the unveiling?" said the production studios supervisor for KXAS/Channel 5. She found herself longing for a hometown paper.

So she was tickled to learn a couple of weeks later that the Star-Telegram was bringing back the Arlington Citizen-Journal, a paper that, coincidentally, her parents played a role in creating.

In 1950, Martha and C. Albert Altwegg Jr., along with Martha "Marty" and Dick Weicker, moved to the area from Illinois to become owners and publishers of The Arlington Journal. In those pre-merger days, the paper competed with The Arlington Citizen, operated by brothers George and Charles Hawkes.

"Theirs was a story of struggle, hardships, pain and now with this resurgence, perhaps real vindication that all their hard work was worth something," Libby Altwegg said of her parents and the Weickers. "Dick stayed with the merged paper until retirement and my dad went on to The Dallas Morning News to become business editor."

Others connected to the former paper, which ceased publication in the mid-1990s, also expressed joy at the news.

"Originally, it was such a vital part of the birth of the Metroplex -- for the good and the bad of that -- supporting the building of the Arlington Memorial Hospital, Six Flags Over Texas and the Rangers baseball stadium, to name a few endeavors," said Helen Weicker, a daughter who spent the summers of 1965 and '66 as a reporter.

"In the a highly fragmented information age in which we live, 'hyperlocal' content can help a bedroom community become a 'living room' community again," she said.

Or, as her mother, Marty Weicker, put it, "I'm only 90 years old now, and I'd like to a have a 10-year subscription."

Patrick M. Walker, 817-390-7423

Read more: http://www.star-telegram.com/2010/08/30/2433730/citizen-journals-rebirth-brings.html#ixzz0zXjGfPcU

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