‘I would not be sorry to die’: A bittersweet friendship built around an Olympia printing press | KNKX

‘I would not be sorry to die’: A bittersweet friendship built around an Olympia printing press

Nov 16, 2019

Up a narrow wooded driveway on Olympia Westside, a small cottage sits beneath a canopy of trees. Inside, light from the south pours in through a large window as Jami Heinricher operates a Heidelberg printing press. It looks like something from Rube Goldberg’s imagination.

We’re at The Sherwood Press. How Jami came to own this business is a story that she’s told many times, but it can still move her to tears.

It was 1989. Jami was working at a coffee shop. She did calligraphy on the side for weddings and such, using ink on paper. Maybe that’s why a friend kept bugging her to check out this little print shop on the west side. Jami kept putting it off, but her friend insisted. So, finally, she made an appointment, knocked on the door, and it opened.

“And here's this crackling fire, and here's Jocelyn with her apron and her little bolo tie and all this printing equipment and clutter, and I just was instantly enchanted. We probably talked for like two hours. And she just was the person that I needed,” Jami recalled.

Jami was 25. She had just discovered Jocelyn Dohm, and The Sherwood Press. This day would change her life.

“I basically said I'm going to volunteer for you. And she didn't say no. So I would just keep coming back every week,” said Jami.

Sound Effect contributor Rob Smith brings us this story of a friendship that blossomed between these two women, even as it moved inexorably toward a final farewell. 

To hear a longer version of this story, head over to Rob Smith’s blog, Welcome To Olympia.