Frank C. Bick died at age 85.
The bankruptcy filing plan comes two months after the company had reached an agreement with most its lenders to refinance distressed loans.
The prepackaged Chapter 11 filing, which Lee expects to initiate in about 10 days, is designed to force uncooperative lenders to go along with a refinancing arrangement.
Lee Enterprises Inc., still needs to refinance another $175 million.
The Suburban Journals of Greater St. Louis will cut 20 jobs and eliminate some print editions.