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John Smetana

John Smetana

Smetana, whose 40-year journalism career included 21 at the Reno Gazette-Journal, was the kind of newsman who made things better — the stories he edited, the newspapers he worked for, the reporters he mentored. Born in 1943 in Melrose Park, Ill., Smetana was inducted into the U.S. Army in 1965 and served in Vietnam with the 11th Armored Cavalry “Blackhorse” Regiment, for which he received a Bronze Star and other medals. He studied journalism at the University of Illinois and began his career in that state, later becoming city editor for the Hollywood, Fla., Sun-Tattler. He started at the Gazette-Journal in 1990 and worked on the sports, copy and city desks over the years.

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