Belton residents express concern about the Star Herald newspaper closing

BELTON, Missouri - The Belton Star Herald is closing and next week's May 12th issue will be the paper's last edition.

I spoke with many people who said losing the town's only newspaper will be a big loss to the community.

Doyle Hicks, a Belton resident and his friends are regulars at Old Town Café on Main Street.

They enjoy the food, each other's company and their local paper.

"A lot of people depend on that paper," said Hicks.

Hicks and his friends just learned The Star Herald is shutting down.

It is one of Belton's oldest businesses and has been around for more than 100 years.

Hicks said the paper covered issues of the day and added a necessary voice to the community.

"They was pretty good about keeping up with everything and without the paper, we aren't going to have nothing," he said.

The owner of Old Town Café said the paper is the latest casualty of Belton's dying downtown.

He wonders if his business is next.

"We had our glory days up until about three years ago. Then, things started going downhill. All of the small businesses on Main Street are struggling to maintain. I may have to close my own doors, my staff will have to find new work and my customers may have to find some place to go," said Robert Trussell.

The paper's publisher said The Star Herald is shutting down due to financial hardships.

The city's former mayor said it is a huge loss but he remains optimistic.

We'll, it is sad. But I am sure we have had some major challenges before. We will pull out of this and something good will come out of it before we are done," said Phil Duncan, the former mayor of Belton.

The Star Herald has been a fixture in the community since 1892.

This main line of communication for Belton now prepares for its final print.

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