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Amsterdam News Staff farewells:

4/12/2011, 4:35 p.m.

There are many words that can be used to describe Harlem. But, the oldest opinions, stories and memories where all captured consistently by the Amsterdam News. And when you think or hear of the Amsterdam News, the first name that comes to mind is WILBERT TATUM. And the best word to describe him would be "Harlem." He kept the company here in Harlem, he spoke for Harlem and he fought for Harlem through the Amsterdam News. I have great respect for Mr. Tatum and know that he will continue his work in a better place. --Nicole Davis, Circulation Supervisor

When I think of a man of strength, of wisdom, with a sense of humor and a capacity to love, I think of Bill Tatum. --Hattie Doran, Display Accounts Receivable

Mr.Tatum,

I have always admired a hard-working individual who stood up for his beliefs. A strong, iconic figure who allowed the urban community to get a better understanding of what America is going through, without fabrication. The Amsterdam News stood for more than the oldest Black newspaper in New York City, but the only Black newspaper still standing in Harlem. Thanks to Mr. Tatum, I am able to share this moment of history being made because he has opened the doors for many during these trying times and allowed us, his employees, to grow and prosper alongside the Amsterdam News and never forgot to thank us for our hard work. He will be missed. I am the young lady he always addressed as "Miss Sitting Pretty" in the corner. God Bless You! --Sonia A. Harris, Classified Advertising Representative

The word that immediately comes to mind for me is "warrior." He was part of the old guard, committed to the uplifting and empowerment of the disenfranchised. Committed to excellence in all that he did, fearless and tireless with a character above reproach. A true man's man. Let us all pray that GOD allows his spirit to remain with us all. Well done, Mr. Tatum, well done. --Penda Howell, Advertising Director

Thank you for standing up for all of God's children and being a voice to the voiceless. --Tina Reese, Classified Advertising Representative

I have been an employee at the Amsterdam News for almost 25 years. I have known Mr. Tatum for approximately 20 years of my tenure. It was always a pleasure speaking to him. You never knew what he was going to say, but you could expect something that would open your eyes. He had a way of saying what he had in mind without any hesitation. I had the most admiration for him. He had respect for his employees and was fair to all who deserved it. He had a way with children, and they, in turn, admired him. My daughters were heartbroken to hear of his death; they reminisced about the past, and we laughed at some of the good memories. He was my adviser and supporter when I needed him. He was my father figure. He will be missed. Rest in peace. --Maria Rosario, Production Manager