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Former Examiner publisher Ben F. Weir Jr. dies at 73

By The Examiner staff

Ben F. Weir Jr., who was The Examiner’s publisher for 20 years, has died. He was 73.

A funeral home in Columbia, Mo., posted his obituary, which said he died Oct. 31 at his home in Columbia.

Ben F. Weir Jr.

Weir was one of the longest serving publishers in The Examiner’s 122-year history, assuming that role in 1986 and staying through 2006. He followed in the footsteps of his father, Ben F. Weir Sr., also an Examiner publisher.

He was active in many local organizations, including Rotary and the Independence Chamber of Commerce, where he was chairman of the board, a role the newspaper’s founder, “Colonel” William Southern Jr., had taken a century ago.  Weir was active in fundraising for the chamber’s current offices on Truman Road, dedicated in 1996 as the Free Enterprise Center. 

Weir also was on the commissioning committee for the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman. 

Ben F. Weir Jr. was born and raised in Nevada, Missouri. He earned a degree from the University of Missouri School of Journalism. He served in the Missouri National Guard from 1969 to 1975.

He was general manager of the Marshall (Mo.) Publishing Company, general manager and publisher of the Nevada Publishing Company, publisher of The Examiner, and general manager of the Longmont (Colorado) Daily Times-Call. In 1999, he was inducted into the Missouri Press Association Hall of Fame.

He frequently said, “Count that day lost when you have not done something to make the community you serve a better place to live in, a better place to raise a family in and a better place to do business in.” 

Weir is survived by his wife of 47 years, Lisa; a son, Robert Benjamin Weir (Kate) of Columbia, Missouri; a grandson, Samuel Benjamin Weir of Columbia, and a sister, Ludmila Ann Dickeson (Robert) of Estes Park, Colorado.