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Richard Scaife, the 81-year-old conservative billionaire owner of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, says he has an untreatable form of cancer. In the lead story of his Sunday paper, Scaife – once called “the funding father of the right” by the Washington Post – tells readers that buying the Tribune-Review “remains one of the proudest, happiest moments of my life. …The work of my [Trib Total Media] newspapers gives me immense pride.”

He adds: “Some who dislike me may rejoice at this news. Naturally, I can’t share their enthusiasm.”

The memo to Scaife’s employees:

Date: May 18, 2014 at 1:00:07 AM EDT
To: triball

A note to all TTM employees:

In Sunday’s editions, you will find an important article authored by Dick Scaife, the owner of Trib Total Media.
tribreview
In the article, Dick discloses the sad news that he has an untreatable form of cancer. As a newsmaker, his disclosure will generate much discussion in the worlds of politics, preservation and the arts, areas which attracted his interest, patronage and philanthropy for decades.

Dick makes clear in the article how proud he is of his newspapers and the work that all of you do to keep our readers informed, educated and entertained. He is especially proud of the newspapers’ watchdog role and their importance to a free society. “That is why, several years ago, I took steps to ensure that my newspapers outlive me,” he writes.

We do not know how long Dick will remain with us. But we want to assure you that his vision of producing excellent newspapers will continue long after he leaves us. We know that you, too, will remain committed to maintaining his vision and his legacy every day, as you are now.

Ralph J. Martin
President, Trib Total Media

Frank L. Craig
Editor, Trib Total Media

H. Yale Gutnick
General Counsel and Vice President, Trib Total Media

* Dick Scaife: What matters most (triblive.com)
* A vast right-wing conspiracy: VF’s 2008 piece on Scaife (vanityfair.com)
* Scaife: Funding father of the right (washingtonpost.com)

Update: My Facebook friends have different reactions to this news (facebook.com)