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Sentinel Nation:

Wow, where do I start?

When I set out to do this thing in 2009, I really had no idea that I would still be doing it in 2016.  Technically, the site didn’t launch until 2010 but the work to start it started in late 2009.

It started as an idea in my head years before that, but came to fruition when Tammy Wilson and I decided it was time to start it.  There needed to be another voice in Enid news.  The Enid News & Eagle simply was not enough.  Hardly anyone we spoke with felt they were doing an adequate job.  Enid Buzz was out there, but we wanted a place for citizen’s to be able to freely express opinions.  We also wanted to mix in some humor as well.  Thus, our “News, Opinion, Humor.”

Route 60 has been able to deliver some amazing stories.  I would put my coverage of the law enforcement in Enid and Garfield County up against anyone.  I’ve covered it from angles nobody else does.  I’ve met some of the most amazing people doing it as well.

Well, bye....Route 60 has also broken stories and had many exclusives.  But I’m not really going to lay all of that our here.  When I started out, I told myself I would keep a list of all that so I could tout it and show people.  But I decided against it.  While it feels good to know that you’ve personally accomplished something, does anyone else really care?

Through the years, Route 60 has only had a few writers.  Most have come and gone.  It has always been primarily a one person job.  The door has always been open however.  I’ve made the offer to many to write.  I’ve never refused to publish anything someone wrote.  Further, when I quoted someone it’s always been a direct quote.  Word for word.

I’ve done my best Sentinel Nation.  And I loved it.  But I don’t love it anymore.  Don’t get me wrong.  There are parts of it I love.  I still love going out and doing a shift with the EPD (even though I haven’t done that in 2 years).  I even still like writing to an extent.  There is just some part of this whole process that is not working.  I’ve tried hard to put my finger on it for quite some time and I can not find it.

Starting December 1st, the Sentinel will go silent.  I don’t want to delete anything.  It will all still be here for you to read should you want.  The Facebook page will there.  I very likely will still pass on weather warnings and things like that.  But probably not much else.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank some people who have helped me along the way over the years.  First, my family. Jennie and my boys, Alex and Drew.

Tammy Wilson for her help in the beginning.

I want to thank Melodie Lunday, without whom over the past two years a lot of updates wouldn’t have happened.

I have to thank Chief Brian O’Rourke and all of Enid’s finest.  People really underappreciate what they do for them.  Brian has been a good friend to me during this.

Even though we parted on negative terms, Eric Benson was good to me while he was City Manager, so thanks to him.

Anyone who wrote for the Sentinel.  Whether it was a book review, political commentary, letter to the editor, etc.  Thank you.

The Nation.  Sentinel Nation.  Thank you.  Thanks for indulging me and allowing me to have a dream for 6 to 7 years.  Incredible.  But I have a message for you.  Do not trust your media.  Me?  Sure, lol.  I never had an agenda other than to get you to ask questions and see things from a different perspective.  Always question things.

enid newsTo that end, while they will continually tout that they are an award winning paper, the Dying Dinosaur, or Enid News & Eagle if you prefer, is a peciliar beast.  They have an agenda, and in fact, they could have multiple agendas.   In the end, it’s more than just about the 1st amendment and being the fourth estate.   Remember, they are a FOR PROFIT business.  What sells?  What are they to do when news is slow?  Hmmm….

But all in all you live in a good city.  It has flaws, but there are great things about it.  But you have to support it.  You have to help it.  You can’t just sit and stare, or see things to do that you’d like to do, and then not go to them.  Find ways to serve and get involved.  Don’t give up on your City and your City won’t give up on you.

 

Maybe someday, on a different road perhaps…

 

Mark