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Bob Betcher

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Bob Betcher, a popular television columnist at The Stuart News who touched readers with stories about his battle with Crohn's disease, died Sunday from cancer. He was 52.

"He was a key person in our organization, and no one was more sensitive to the needs and interests of readers," said Tom Weber, publisher of Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers. "His enthusiasm for life, his sense of humor and his love for his family and friends always shined through everything he did."

Mr. Betcher, an alumnus of Martin County High and Indian River Community College, started with The News in 1972 and held several positions as an editor and reporter during a career that spanned more than 30 years.

But he was best known for his column writing, which included a weekly column on local radio and television events. Mr. Betcher also built a strong bond with the public with two other weekly columns in which he answered questions from readers.

Mr. Betcher's survivors include his mother, Jo of Stuart.

Visitation will be from 5 to 8 p.m. today at Aycock Funeral Home in Stuart. A funeral Mass will be Wednesday, 9 a.m. at St. Andrew Catholic Church in Stuart. Burial will be in Fernhill Cemetery, Stuart.

Instead of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hospice of Martin and St. Lucie, 1201 S.E. Indian St., Stuart, Fla. 34997.
Published in The Palm Beach Post on Nov. 14, 2005
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