I received many congratulatory calls and emails for the 100th anniversary of our National Herald.
There were messages from everywhere (the power of the Internet!).
Greetings from politicians flowed in, such as from Alexis Tsipras, Prime Minister of Greece. It was a message of substance, not like the usual messages politicians send.
I also heard from former Prime Minister Constantine Mitsotakis, who said he has been reading the Herald for decades. He said: “you should be proud of what you have accomplished, for your priceless, selfless service, in the Greek-American community, that special portion of Hellenism, in Greece, and in the U.S. You deserve congratulations.”
Former Prime Ministers Kostas Karamanlis and Antonis Samaras also sent warm wishes. A message from Vice President Joe Biden will be published in a forthcoming special issue. I thank them all.
I particularly thank our readers, known and unknown, who took the time to wish us “a thousand years.”
Thanks are also owed to the television station MEGA of Cyprus, which devoted a long segment – five minutes – to us, in an interview with me, during their lunchtime program. And to HuffPost Greece for a very substantial tribute to our anniversary, as well as to the Athens News Agency for the eloquent and lengthy presentation of the Anniversary by Panikos Panayiotou.
But today I want to express my admiration to my colleagues in New York, Boston, Athens, Nicosia, and Tripolis, who have dedicated their careers to the newspaper and, by extension, to our Community, and to the homeland.
It is a group of people – more than fifty – with rare talent, character, ethics, and a dedication to their mission which is truly impressive.
They do not have 9-to-5 jobs. Nor do they only work merely five days a week. Neither is the environment a tranquil one. The pressure of meeting deadlines is exhausting. And their compensation is not proportionate to their contributions.
So, it is mainly their love for the newspaper, the feeling of obligation to the community, that drives them.
They are the people – men and women – who guard Thermopylae.
And it is not just today ‘s colleagues who express the love and pride for the newspaper. Ms. Popi Ragouzeos, who was responsible for years for the critical Classified department, sent me the following email from Limassol, Cyprus: “Dear Mr. Diamataris. It is with great emotion that I write these lines today on the 100th anniversary of the founding of our beloved newspaper, National Herald-Ethnikos Kyrix. I wish you good health and happiness and even greater success!”
And Stavros Marmarinos wrote me from Florida, to which he moved a few years ago, but who continues his long and exemplary service with the newspaper as a correspondent: “Antoni, I feel proud because I experienced ‘from inside’ a large part of the history of this 100-year-old newspaper that we loved and all continue to love.
I lived, dreamed, prospered, cried, and learned in that place. I became a better person there. I never regretted it. And I never forget the wearying but oh-so-sweet hunt for information every morning.
Happy Birthday to our National Herald, and may you be blessed to guide it for as many more years as God shall bless you.”