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August 07, 2007

Longtime KTLA Anchor Hal Fishman Passes

Beloved journalist, pilot would have turned 76 on August 26

Hal Fishman

Los Angeles, CA – Longtime Los Angeles anchorman Hal Fishman—thought perhaps to be longest-running anchor in television history—died this morning.

When illness struck Fishman last week, doctors found he had a colon cancer, which spread to his liver. He was 75

The Brooklyn native first joined KTLA in 1965, helping the station earn an Emmy and a Peabody Award for its coverage of the Watts riots that year.

In 1975, Fishman began anchoring KTLA's 10 pm newscast and consistently remained a highly-regarded, trusted source with Southern Californians ever since.

Among the 47-year news veteran's numerous distinctions, Fishman received the prestigious Governors Award from the Los Angeles Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in 1987, the Outstanding Broadcast Journalism award from Society of Professional Journalists and his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1992.

In 2000, KTLA officially dubbed its newsroom "The Hal Fishman Newsroom," in celebration of Fishman's 40th anniversary in broadcasting and as a nod to his dedication to KTLA and the community.

Fishman, who held a bachelor's degree from Cornell University and master's degree in political science from UCLA, told the Los Angeles Times in 1990 why he believed he endured:

"When I think of the hundreds of anchors who have come and gone over the last 30 years—many of them better-looking and better-coifed than I ever was," he explained, "there was one area that they were not better, and that is in being dedicated to being informed...I think the audience perceives that."

"I am not a charismatic broadcaster or a dramatic guy, but I think I am a person that people can trust to give them a straightforward and accurate account of what's going on in the world," he said. "I think that's why I have lasted so long."

A licensed pilot as well as a broadcast journalist, Fishman held 12 world aviation records for speed and altitude.

Honor Hal Fishman with donations to the
American Cancer Society, in lieu of flowers

Fishman is survived by his wife, Nolie, and son, David. In lieu of flowers, the family requests those who wish to pay tribute make a donation to the American Cancer Society.

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