Steve Robertson, Waccamaw Publishers founder, remembered for commitment to local news, family and community

Feb 1, 2023


Publisher | Myrtle Beach Herald

Stephen Wayne Robertson, 70, of Horry County, Florida, died after heart complications on Dec 31, 2022. He was the founding president of Waccamaw Publishers.

Mr. Robertson was the son of the late Dillard W. (Tex) Robertson of Oklahoma and the late Mollie Ray Wilson Robertson Floyd of Friendship. His stepfather was the late Wayne Floyd of Centenary.

He is survived by Cheryl, his wife of 50 years; son, Stephen Robertson Jr. (Adrian); and daughter, T.J. Robertson (Kayla) of Conway.

Mr. Robertson has four grandchildren: Caroline Robertson, Kayleigh Robertson, Carleigh Robertson, and Hayden Johnson of Conway.

His two brothers survive him: Tim Robertson (Tamara) of Friendship and Mark Robertson (Hilda) of Chesnee. Two brothers-in-law also survive him: James Allen LeGette Jr. (Frances) and Walter LeGette (Gwen) of Centenary.

Steve and Cheryl Robertson have lived in Horry County since 1973. Residents of Conway, they recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. They are the founding members of Waccamaw Publishers, producing multiple successful newspapers over nearly 43 years, including the Horry Independent, Myrtle Beach Herald, Carolina Forest Chronicle, Loris Scene, North Strand News, News & Shopper, and VISIT. Robertson and his son helped build an award-winning, hyper-local website,

After establishing the Horry Independent in 1980, Steve published six more newspapers in Horry County before retiring to run for the District 105 seat in the S.C. House of Representatives.

His son, Stephen, was recently named publisher. Steve's daughter, T.J., teaches physical education at Kingston Elementary School.

From the beginning, God blessed Robertson’s mission to provide factual, unbiased journalism to the areas his papers served. Robertson surrounded himself with talented people who shared his vision of what great local newspapers should be. Local businesses supported these efforts, and he truly appreciated their loyalty. None of the success of these papers or his website could have happened without the thousands of loyal readers and an incredible staff.

A graduate of Coastal Carolina University, Steve has served as president of the S.C. Press Association, chairman of the Horry County Recreation Commission, president of the Conway Lions Club and president of the Grand Strand Press Association. He also served on the Horry County Red Cross board of directors. Steve was also a member of all the chambers of commerce in Horry County.


Robertson was the recipient of the Conway Chamber of Commerce "Man of the Year,” American Legion Post 111 Distinguished Citizens Award, Conway Lion of the Year, Coastal Carolina University Entrepreneur of the Year, more than 100 writing and editing awards from the S.C. Press Association, the Gaught-Thompson Journalist of the Year, winner of the S.C. Press Association's Freedom of Information Award (three times), the best in-depth Field and Herald story in 1980 and the Loris Bog-off Champion Cook award.


Steve published multiple books, including “An Illustrated History of Horry County Vol. 1,” “An Illustrated History of Horry County Vol. 2,” “An Illustrated History of Myrtle Beach,” “An Illustrated History of Aynor” and “Smalls: The South Wanted His Head. The North, His Heart.” Much of the “Smalls” book featured Robert Smalls, the son of a white plantation owner, who stunned the nation in 1862 when he commandeered Charleston’s most prized warship and sailed it past the deadly guns of Fort Sumter to freedom. The heroic escape, which made him the most famous Black man in the United States, earned Smalls a meeting with Abraham Lincoln that changed the course of the Civil War. While his name might have been erased from some history books, the story of one man’s heroic fight to free a race from bondage continues to amaze and inspire all Americans.

Robertson was a resourceful historian of Horry County. He documented the community’s past with pictorial history books, and he created a blog, Multiple Facebook groups emphasize the history and reminiscing of the good ole days.

Robertson enjoyed fishing, golfing, reading, writing, camping, traveling, playing video games and spending time with his family.

He was well known in the community for his selfless service to Horry County and his deep Christian faith.

In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to the Finding a Cure for Angelman Syndrome (FAST), P.O. Box 40307, Houston, TX 78704, to aid his granddaughter, Caroline Roberston, in research for a cure for her special needs.

Visitation was held Jan. 4 at Goldfinch Funeral Home, and the service was held on Jan. 5 at The Rock in Conway, South Carolina. Burial was at Centenary Methodist Church in Marion, South Carolina.