When I purchased Weider Publications from Joe Weider in 2002, I was already well aware of his standing in the publishing and fitness industries. How could I not be? I knew his magazines, including Muscle & Fitness, FLEX, Men’s Fitness, and Shape, and his wildly successful supplement and exercise equipment lines, so by the time we met, Joe’s name was as familiar to me as if he’d been a member of my family. And so it was for the millions upon millions whose lives were positively influenced by the self-made fitness icon from Montreal.

From the time he was a teenager, Joe was passionate about fitness, in terms of both his personal involvement and his lifelong advocacy for others to embrace the lifestyle. In fact, so committed was he to this advocacy that he made me promise I’d keep his magazines true to his original vision before he’d sell them to me. He was adamant in his belief that living a healthy lifestyle—one that includes lots of exercise, clean eating, and a positive mental attitude—has benefits far beyond just the physical, and he was insistent that the magazines he founded would always champion this cause. I promised him they would, and today they carry on as an evergreen tribute to Joe and his beliefs.

I also take great pride in having been given the reins to the world’s premier bodybuilding and fitness event, the Olympia Weekend, by Joe. While today it’s a blockbuster extravaganza that takes place over three days each fall in Las Vegas, the Olympia started as a men’s bodybuilding contest at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, when Joe launched it back in 1965. With Joe’s support, our team was able to grow the Olympia by leaps and bounds, giving fans and competitors alike a chance to celebrate the lifestyle that Joe was so instrumental in popularizing throughout his life.

On behalf of all of us at American Media, Inc., I would like to extend my sincerest condolences to Joe’s amazing wife, Betty, to his nephew Eric Weider, and to the entire Weider family, as well as to the global community of bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts who followed Joe’s lead. His legacy lives on through all of us, and my promise to you is that we will continue to always honor Joe’s mission right here in the pages of Muscle & Fitness magazine.