Kathryn Buckstaff

Earlier this year, a couple hours after midnight, while looking through archived newspapers an editor, publisher and I were debating who the best writer in the area was.

I said Kathryn Buckstaff and I stand by the statement.

Graced with spectacular vernacular, Buckstaff has published three books, several magazine articles and hit the front page of the Springfield News-Leader on a regular basis.

To Buckstaff, reporting was all about relationships. She had the exclusive on some great stories and earned loyalty from much of Branson's top brass.

Her stories were the most likely to be framed, should an area business have a keepsake from a regional paper.

Her love for the community made some stories difficult to cover.

Mike Brittain, member of the council of elders told me it's impossible to write without bias and there were moments when I challenged hers - she politely responded - thanks for reading. Read I did.

She hated politics - reporting was far less a love than writing.

She hated having her picture taken but - if you took a shot anyway chances are you'd catch her smiling.

I can personally say, I've learned a lot from Kathryn Buckstaff

Ron Davis reports the Springfield News-Leader eliminated the Branson Bureau after 20 years. Kathryn Buckstaff was the Branson Bureau Chief.