The Youngstown Vindicator will cease publishing in mid-August after 150 years of operation.

The announcement came Friday afternoon, according to WFMJ, the Youngstown television station owned by the same family that owns the newspaper.

Contacted Friday afternoon, a top executive of the Vindicator declined to speak about the decision, referring instead to the WFMJ story.

The TV station’s story said Vindicator Publisher Betty J.H. Brown Jagnow and General Manager Mark Brown will publish a letter Saturday explaining the decision.

U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Niles, a Democratic candidate for president, called the news “heartbreaking.”

In a social media post, Ryan discussed the importance of local newspapers.

“The Vindicator has been a pillar in our community, and its reporters and staff have always been unwavering in their commitment to truth and transparency,” Ryan tweeted. “Local newspapers are critical to our democracy. We need to support them.”

In a letter to WFMJ employees dated June 28, Mark Brown said the decision to shut down the newspaper will not affect the television station.

“We have no plans, no intentions, no desire, no thoughts and no interest in selling WFMJ. Period,” Brown said in the WFMJ story.

The newspaper’s first edition was published June 25, 1869. It is the only daily newspaper in Mahoning County.

The Vindicator has won numerous awards for its news coverage, most recently six first-place Associated Press awards in 2019 and a total of 18 AP Media Editors Awards in 2018.