BURBANK -- Bob Young Sr., who has been writing good news in the pages
of the Glendale News-Press, Burbank Leader and Foothill Leader for 17
years, retires today.
Young started covering service clubs in the region about 17 years ago
after a 50-year printing career and lots of experience with volunteer
“Bob’s an icon,” said Jack Ricketts, a Glendale resident and member of
the Burbank-Magnolia Park Optimist Club. “Through his efforts, service
clubs have got the best publicity. He has helped them become stronger.”
Nearly two decades ago, Young’s first assignment was covering a
watermelon festival sponsored by the Sunland-Tujunga Lions Club.
“It was hotter than blazes,” he said.
There have been too many highlights to mention since, he said. In his
17 years, Young, 88, has written about well-known groups like the Elks,
the Kiwanis and the Rotary, and not-so-well known clubs such as the
Burbank Emblem Club. The groups he wrote about built halfway houses,
planted trees, awarded good students and teachers and raised money for
countless other causes.
Service clubs are important parts of local communities, Young said,
filling in the cracks people can fall through. National organizations of
local groups have embarked on million-dollar efforts to rid the world of
maladies such as polio and iodine deficiencies, he said.
“That is the whole thought -- to do for people what the government
can’t do and should not do,” he said.
Young came to California in 1946 and owned printing businesses while
living in La Canada Flintridge. After retiring, he answered an
advertisement and started writing for the newspaper.
He has had a pretty good record over 17 years, missing only two
“I had the flu,” he said.
He is looking forward to his second retirement of working around the
house and building early-American furniture, something he has been
putting off since 1983. And he will continue to work with the seven or
eight organizations of which he is still a member.
Young said he has learned the secret to writing a column for the past
“If you know your subject, you can write on it,” he said. “I’ve
enjoyed it thoroughly.”