Adrian O'Connor retires this week, but his legacy will remain. Adrian arrived from Danville and quickly developed a reputation as a thorough and dedicated newspaper man — who else would have a cat named Paperboy?
He was known for working early and then slipping over to Swirl's where he and Jake Vickers would solve the world's problems. A big sports enthusiast, Adrian could digress and discuss his latest trip to a MLB stadium or taking his little brother from Big Brothers and Big Sisters to the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. He also used this opportunity to pick up the latest local news and gossip.
If something was brewing in the city, we could anticipate a call from Adrian. The Star usually had an opinion, but Adrian could be counted to look at things objectively. He often did not agree with us, but he was fair. And, if we wanted to dig ourselves into a hole, he would let us.
Positive aspects of every issue would appear prominently in Adrian's stories. He was a community booster and strove to put the community's best foot forward in every article.
Adrian's other focus was local history. His "Valley Pike" column featured tidbits and reflections from local personalities. Adrian's "Remembering Winchester, Virginia: The Best of Valley Pike" is a collection of colorful events. These volumes are must reads for anyone interested in learning the "rest of the story" of Winchester and the Shenandoah Valley.
Congratulations, Adrian, on a job well done.