Renowned journalist Merrill Perera, who had been in the media field for over 40 years, started his carrier as a cub reporter at Lake House in 1963. Later he served Sun Group and Upali Newspapers Pvt LTD as a journalist. Merrill was promoted as Editor-in-Chief of ‘Divaina’, an Upali Newspapers product, by 2000.
He was a leading figure in the field of journalism for about half century and has written several books on journalism as well.
Merrill, who commands high recognition as a veteran in the media field, has toured many countries.
However it is sad that Merrill has been incapacitated by illness since 2005. He is in this condition due to a slipped disk he suffered
Giants in the media field, who held the post of Editor-in-Chief of leading newspapers in both Sinhala and English, like D. F. Kariyakarawana, Dharmapala Wettasinghe, Edmond Ranasinghe, Rex De Silva and Gamini Weerakoon had a high regard for him.
A special innovative feature introduced by him was to carry pictures with a width of 8 columns and accompanied by equally large headlines in the front page of the newspaper in case of natural disasters like floods, landmines or claymore explosions, during the war. This is a popular practice followed by newspapers today.
However it is sad that Merrill has been incapacitated by illness since 2005. He is in this condition due to a slipped disk he suffered as a result of sitting for long hours at office. He was forced to spend his EPF funds to obtain treatment at hospitals like Sri Jayewardenepura and Nawaloka. He even received medication at Apollo in India and Mt. Elizabeth in Singapore. Merrill who was subject to several surgical operations showed signs of recovery, but he was paralyzed afterwards.
Contributions received from the President’s fund for his treatment during the tenure of President Mahinda Rajapaksa were used to obtain treatment at hospitals in Sri Lanka and abroad.
At present he is spending his life as an invalid, all alone in his small house in Panadura.
He spends the day reading his books repeatedly. He specially checks his bank passbook to find whether any sympathizer has made a contribution, generous acts which help him keep his head high during this troubled time.
Those who wish to help him financially can do so by making a contribution to A/C 104753754756 which is maintained at Sampath Bank under his name. Merrill can be reached on his mobile phone (0766 227263)