Serving the Vineyard community well


To the Editor:

I believe Doug Cabral — reporter, editor, and citizen — has served the Vineyard community well. Beginning his Island newspaper experience under the legendary Vineyard Gazette editor and publisher Henry Beetle Hough, he has reported on and observed the people, issues, organization, and evolution of this interesting community for almost four decades. The perspective gained from this has enabled him to understand and communicate the issues and changes he wrote about in a larger context that has a depth a snapshot of them cannot.

His style as an editor, sometimes provocative, sometimes humorous, and, yes, sometimes opinionated, was enjoyed by some and not so by others. His legacy, however, is that his perspective was based on an understanding of the character of both the Island and its inhabitants gained over all those years. This helped him to chronicle in a substantive way, for today and the future, the challenges resulting from the only constant here, which is change.

His occasional insightful profiles of individuals from all elements of the Island communities reflected his understanding of the human stories here and, in a most personal way, the depth and diversity of the people who make up the fabric and spirit of the Island.

The result of his efforts is a chance for all of us to better understand today and do the best we can for the future. In one sense, that’s a significant part of the mission of any newspaper, and the Island is lucky to have two. After 36 years of chronicling, Doug’s work now takes its place as part the record of how we got to where we are. It will be of continuing value.

Fair winds, Doug. I may be wrong, but I suspect there may be a book or two tucked away in your head.

Matthew Stackpole

West Tisbury