New Deerfield Editor Talks About Intro To Chicago

Eric DeGrechie

DEERFIELD, IL — It was October 2002 and I had just landed at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport for the first time in my life. I was a sports reporter for a daily newspaper in my hometown of Saratoga Springs, New York. For the parent company of The Saratogian, I had been named the horse racing writer of the newspaper chain several months prior.

My first official assignment in that role was to cover the Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships at Arlington International Racecourse. Getting off the plane at O'Hare, my mind was buzzing with excitement. I was in Chicago, one of the greatest cities in the world, and I was set to write about horse racing's Super Bowl.

As a native of Upstate New York, I had made many trips to New York City and have an affinity for everything about that wonderful place. With that, Chicago truly blew my mind. It was perfect, from the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan to the historic grandeur of Wrigley Field — I was hooked.

When I returned to New York after that trip, I couldn't stop talking about Chicago, but if you had told that younger version of me that I would call this area home one day, I probably wouldn't have believed it.

Fast-forward to October 2014, exactly 12 years after my first trip to Chicago, and I was back in the "Windy City." This time, I was moving along with my wife as she had landed work here.

Soon after getting settled in, I began working for a local media company out of Northbrook. I started out as a community editor before being promoted to the role of managing editor, a title I held until recently when the company ceased operations due to COVID-19.

Luckily, I was able to join the Patch team and I'm ecstatic to continue covering local news, something I've been doing for the better part of the last 20 years. As you'll soon find out as you get to know me, I live and breathe hyperlocal news and truly care about the communities I cover.

If you have any story ideas or tips, please reach out to me at I look forward to this next adventure in my career and working with all of you.

This article originally appeared on the Deerfield Patch