In 2004, when Detroit News reporter Jim Kerwin, a much-loved teddy bear of a man, died, his younger colleague Nolan Finley wrote: “Kerwin wasn’t the most eccentric of the pack of older reporters who spent more time … at the Anchor Bar than they did covering their beats. But he was pretty close.
“Before a late-in-life marriage, Jim spent many of his nights on a cot in the back of the Anchor.” But make no mistake; Kerwin was a serious journalist and an environmental reporter before that beat became commonplace. At one point, probably late in his life, judging by the tentative ballpoint scrawl, Kerwin wrote down the names of as many of the Anchor Bar gallery members as he could identify. The following list is drawn from Kerwin’s jottings. The quoted comments are his, unless otherwise noted.
Allan Blanchard, Detroit News Washington bureau chief, whose death was attributed to Legionnaires’ disease.
Charles C. Cain III, Associated Press bureau chief.
Jack Carlisle, Detroit News reporter. “He was a star reporter for us,” recalls Don Pilette, an editor at the Times and later the News.
Jack Crellin, Detroit Times and Detroit News labor writer.
Edgar “Doc” Greene, Detroit News sportswriter and columnist.
Wally Hushen, a “legendary newsman,” Detroit News city editor, and “trainer of reporters.”
Beverly Keller, Detroit News society columnist and “Contact 10” staffer.
James “Scotty” Kilpatrick, Detroit News photographer.
Peter Lochbiler, Detroit News reporter and rewrite man.
Bob Maher, Detroit Times “ace reporter.”
Charley Manos, Detroit News columnist.
Ven Marshall, TV reporter/anchor, Channel 4 and Channel 7.
Jack McNulty, Detroit News copy editor.
John Nehman, Detroit News business reporter.
Don O’Connor, Detroit Times Washington, D.C., correspondent, Detroit News rewrite man, and assistant metro editor. “He was a terrific reporter, a golden boy,” Pilette says.
Art O’Shea, reporter and columnist, Free Press, Detroit News.
Yvonne Petrie, Detroit News fashion editor.
Bob Popa, Detroit News Lansing Bureau reporter, press secretary for Mayor Coleman A. Young.
Rollie Ransom, Detroit News photographer.
Cy Riley, Detroit News food editor.
Dave Roche, Detroit News. “He was a ranking ad manager and destined for stardom,” says former News reporter Norm Sinclair. “He fell asleep in his vintage ’58 Corvette and ran off I-75 into the median at Square Lake. He played third base on the News Hawks softball team. The fellow who replaced him at third is also on the [Anchor] wall. He, too, was killed in a car crash.”
Kay Savage, Free Press food editor.
Hal “Swami” Schram, high-school sportswriter, Free Press.
Paul Sheridan, Detroit Police inspector.
Hank Shurmur, independent TV-news cameraman.
The Hon. Thomas P. Thornton, federal judge.
Jim Trainor, Detroit Times editor, later press secretary to Mayor Jerome P. Cavanagh.
Dick Tripp, Free Press photographer.
Carter Van Lopik, Free Press reporter.
Howard Warren, Detroit News reporter.
Bob Wood, Detroit News “slot man” (chief copy editor).