- Associated Press - Saturday, April 16, 2016

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) - Gene Cryer, the former editor of what is now the South Florida Sun Sentinel, has died following complications from a stroke, the newspaper reported Saturday on its website.

Described as “a tough-as-nails editor who guided the South Florida Sun Sentinel from a sleepy Fort Lauderdale newspaper into a regional media force,” Cryer was 80 years old.

He came to what was then the Fort Lauderdale News in 1979 from Rockford, Illinois. He became editor of two newspapers - the News and Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel - when both merged in 1982. The combined newspaper, owned by the Tribune Company, grew quickly and expanded to open bureaus in Washington, Atlanta, Miami and West Palm Beach.

He is survived by sons Scott and Michael, and daughter Patty Shepherd. Funeral arrangements are pending.

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Information from: The South Florida Sun Sentinel, https://www.sun-sentinel.com

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