On the Beat

Scoops and a Legacy

Hershey made an immediate impact in the Newsday city room. His coverage of a deadly charter bus accident won a Silurians award and was fourth in that year’s competition for the Pulitzer Prize. Part of a team that probed the 1971 Attica prison insurrection, he reported on correction issues and other aspects of criminal justice, government, and politics. His and a colleague's exposure of a vote-siphoning scheme led to the indictment of six officials, including the New York Assembly Speaker, and was honored by the State Publishers Association. Hershey was also ahead of the pack in coverage of the notorious “Son of Sam” case, the inadequate police response to rioting during the 1977 New York City blackout, and the barely noticed Congressional campaign of an obscure Queens prosecutor named Geraldine Ferraro. But his most lasting Newsday legacy, chronicled in histories of the paper and Times Mirror Corporation, was the successful 30-month drive he led to organize journalists into what was then the pressmen’s union. Generations of news professionals have benefited from that landmark effort.

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Accepting the Society of Silurians Award for spot news reporting. Press card 1977.