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KOMO-TV
Seattle, Washington
Branding KOMO 4
Slogan Working 4 You
Channels Analog: 4 (VHF)

Digital: 38 (UHF)

Translators 11 K11EZ Cashmere/Leavenworth
55 K55AQ Neah Bay
Affiliations ABC
Owner Fisher Communications
Licensee Fisher Broadcasting - Seattle TV, LLC
First air date December 10, 1953
Call letters' meaning unknown, yet it's pronounced "Como"
Sister stations(s) KOMO (AM), KPLZ-FM, KVI
Former Affiliations NBC (1953-1959)
Transmitter Power 100 kW (analog)
810 kW (DT)
Height 247 m (analog)
223 m (DT)
Facility ID 21656
Website KOMO 4's Website

KOMO-TV, is a TV station in Seattle, Washington. It's affiliated with the ABC Network. It broadcasts on analog ch. 4 & DT ch. 38. It's the flagship station of Fisher Communications & it's studios are located in Fisher Plaza along with sister stations KOMO-AM, KPLZ-FM & KVI, directly across the street from the Space Needle. The station's transmitter is located on Queen Anne Hill in Seattle.

In addition to programming from ABC, KOMO also carries syndicated programming such as Live with Regis & Kelly, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy! & At the Movies.

It's 1 of 5 local Seattle TV stations seen in Canada on the Bell TV & Star Choice satellite providers.

HistoryEdit

KOMO-TV began operation on December 10, 1953 as an NBC affiliate, owing to its radio sister's long affiliation with NBC radio. In 1959, KOMO swapped affiliations with KING-TV & became an ABC affiliate, which it remains today. For most of the last quarter-century, it has waged a spirited battle with KING for 1st place in the Seattle news ratings. It's currently in 2nd place in most time slots.

KOMO-TV has set many broadcast "1sts" in the industry. In 1954, a KOMO news photographer discovered a way to develop color film in a new process that took just a couple hours instead of days. His discovery allowed KOMO-TV to become the 1st TV station in the nation to broadcast in true color.

Such well-known ABC shows as The Brady Bunch & The Partridge Family originally aired on KOMO during the late 1960s & early 1970s.

In 1985, KOMO became the 1st TV station to broadcast daily programming in full stereo sound.

In 1994, KOMO applied for the 1st test license for broadcasting new HD signals. KOMO began broadcasting HDTV in 1997 & on May 18th 1999, KOMO became the 1st TV station in America to broadcast it's daily newscasts in HDTV. This statement, however, comes into conflict with a claim made by WFAA-TV (sister station of KING-TV) that it's the 1st station in the nation to broadcast its daily news programs in HDTV on February 28, 1997.

KOMO nearly lost 1 of its own in the catastrophic eruption of Mount St. Helens on May 18, 1980. Dave Crockett, who had been with KOMO since 1975, had been covering the mountain every day for 3 weeks until being rotated out a few days prior. On the morning of May 18, he woke up @ 3 AM in Seattle on a hunch that he would get some impressive video that day & loaded up his news car & headed towards Mount St. Helens without anyone @ KOMO knowing about it. He arrived @ the mountain just as it was erupting. His news video, which shows an advancing ash cloud & mud flows down the South Fork Toutle River, was made famous by its 11-minute long "journey into the dark", 6 of those minutes of which were recorded in "total darkness" as Crockett narrated to what he thought would be his "last day on Earth."

His video made worldwide news & was used in a movie remake of the disaster starring Art Carney. The car he drove, with the remains of KOMO lettering still visible, is now a part of a Mount St. Helens Volcano Museum just outside Toutle.

KOMO also has an almost forgotten distinction as being the 1st station in Seattle to broadcast a TV signal. Whereas crosstown rival KING 5 was the 1st to air "wide audience" TV (of a Thanksgiving day high school football game), KOMO broadcast a TV signal nearly 20 years prior. On June 3 1929, KOMO radio engineer Francis J. Brott televised images of a heart, a diamond, a question mark, letters & numbers over electrical lines to small sets with 1-inch screens. A handful of viewers were captivated by the broadcast. KOMO would likely have held the distinction of being the 1st TV station in Seattle & perhaps the nation, were it not for a depression & World War II.

Past personalitiesEdit

On Monday, August 13th, 2012, Beloved Anchorwoman Kathi Goertzen passed away after a decade long battle of brain tumor. KOMO aired a special coverage tribute to Kathi at 4, 5, 6, and 11pm Newscast along with a Special Tribute at 8pm. Kiro 7 Steve Raible, King 5 Jean Enerson, and ABC World News Diane Sawyer along with local and state government politicians left Kathi a tribute messages (Gov. Christine Gregoire, Sen. Maria Cantwell, and more). KOMO has started memorial in front of the Station at Fisher Plaza.


During the 1960s, local TV personality Don McCune became well known for 2 programs. Mr. McCune was known to thousands of Seattle-area children who came to know him in the role of Captain Puget, hosting a children's entertainment program. KOMO & Don McCune also produced the "Exploration Northwest" documentary series, which explored many of the places & people of the Pacific Northwest.

Former NBC Nightly News weekend anchor John Seigenthaler Jr. was once a reporter & anchor @ KOMO-TV. He married Kerry Brock, another KOMO News anchor & reporter in 1992, left the station & moved to Nashville, Tennessee.

Current NBC reporter John Larson was a reporter @ KOMO-TV from 1989-1994, winning several Emmy Awards.

Bill Brubaker was a long time newscaster @ KOMO-TV for 25 years from 1962-1987.

Keith Jackson, now retired after a long career with ABC Sports, had his start @ KOMO in the 1950s.

Bruce King was a long time sportscaster @ KOMO-TV for 31 years, starting in 1968 & retiring in 1999. He also worked @ WABC in New York for 1 year (1981) & can be seen in a video promo of the station @ the "80's TV Themes SuperSite."

Reporter Steve Osunsami of ABC News was a reporter with KOMO-TV in the mid 90s. His reports included stories on a severe snowstorm that struck Washington State in 1996.

Former KOMO reporter & anchor Emily Langlie, who worked @ KOMO during much of the 1980s & 1990s, is the granddaughter of former Washington State governor Arthur B. Langlie.

Current PersonalitiesEdit

AnchorEdit

  • Mary Nam - Weekdays at 4, 6 and 11pm
  • Dan Lewis - Weekdays at 5, 6 and 11pm
  • Eric Johnson - Weekdays at 5pm
  • Peggy Bunker - Weekdays Morning and 11am
  • Brad Goode - Weekdays Morning
  • John Discepelo - Weekends at 5, 6 and 11pm
  • Michelle Esteban - Weekends at 5, 6 and 11pm

WeatherEdit

  • Steve Pool - Chief Meteorologist @ 4, 5, 6 & 11 PM
  • Paul Deanno - Weekday Mornings & @ 11 AM (Leaving August 2012)
  • Seth Wayne - Weekday Mornings & 11 AM (Starting August 2012)
  • Theron Zahn - Weekend Mornings (Anchor/Weather)
  • Shannon O'Donnell - Weekend Evenings @ 5, 6, 11 PM (Saturday @ 4pm)

SportsEdit

  • Tim Lewis - Weekend Evenings @ 5, 6 & 11 PM & Fill-In
  • Chris Miller - Sports Reporter

TrafficEdit

  • Paris Jackson - Weekdays Morning

ReportersEdit

  • Connie Thompson - Problem Solvers
  • Denise Whitaker
  • Tracy Vedder
  • Tricia Manning-Smith
  • Bryan Johnson - Senior reporter
  • Liz Rocca
  • Keith Eldridge
  • Michelle Esteban
  • Herb Weisbaum - Problem Solvers
  • Mark Miller
  • Matt Markovich
  • Luke Duecy
  • Joel Moreno
  • Ray Lane
  • Lindsay Cohan
  • Jon Humbert
  • Kelly Koopmans

Previous PersonalitiesEdit

AnchorsEdit

  • KATHI GOERTZEN - KOMO 4 News Anchor (1958-2012)
  • Natasha Curry - KOMO 4 Morning News Co-Anchor, now @ CNN
  • Sabrina Register - KOMO 4 Morning News Co-Anchor (now @ NWCN)
  • Jim Harriott - Retired from KOMO-TV in 1988, went to Voice of America radio. Deceased in 2007
  • John Siegenthaler - (1990-1992)
  • Kerry Brock - (1983-1992) Married John Siegenthaler in 1992; both left to work for WKRN, has presumably left the broadcast news business.
  • Eric Slocum - (1990-2001) Was released in budget cuts in 2001; now works for KOMO Radio
  • Brook Stanford - Anchor of KOMO 4 News in the late 70s, later served as the station's 1st "People Helper" reporter. Retired in 2001.
  • Bill Brubaker
  • Ted Warren - After leaving KOMO 4 News in 1989, anchored an afternoon drive talk show, and later the morning news, on KING 1090 AM Radio. Later performed some "stringer" work for CNN out of the Pacific Northwest. Currently President & Senior Partner for Strategic Resources, an international executive search firm in Bellevue, WA. www.strategicresources.com
  • Jeff McAtee - Anchored KOMO 4 News with Connie Thompson and Kerry Brock in the 1980s. Left the station in 1986 to take the main anchor position at WSMV in Nashville, Tenn.
  • Emily Langlie - Granddaughter of former Washington governor Arthur B. Langlie. Anchored the weekend editions of KOMO News 4 along with John Siegenthaler in the early 1990s, later moved to an investigative reporting role. Left KOMO in the late 1990s. Prior to KOMO, was the nightbeat reporter for KING in the 80's.
  • Margo Myers - (1992-2005) Weekend news anchor along with Eric Slocum. Weekday morning news anchor. Moved to KIRO-TV in 2005.
  • Lynn Espinoza - Anchor of the Morning Express newscasts, left KOMO in the mid 1990s. Now Owner/Principal at Speak! Communications, Inc., an international communications training firm headquartered in Seattle.

WeatherEdit

  • Todd Johnson - KOMO 4 News @ 5, 6 & 11 Weekends, now @ KIRO 7
  • Shannon O'Donnell - staff weather anchor (1994-1995), was at 10 PM weather anchor @ KING 5/KONG 16 now back at KOMO-TV
  • Bob McGuire - Weekend weather anchor (1990-1992). Now works @ KTVQ in Billings, MT.
  • George Siegel - Morning Express weather anchor/main co-anchor along with Lynn Espinoza. Left KOMO in 1996.
  • Ray Ramsey - Longtime KOMO weather anchor, retired in 1984 & replaced by current weather anchor Steve Pool

ReportersEdit

  • George Howell - now @ KIRO-TV
  • John Sharify
  • Kevin Reece - now @ KHOU-TV in Houston
  • Joe Furia
  • April Zepeda
  • Todd Johnson - now @ KIRO-TV
  • Steve Osunsami - now with ABC news Southern Bureau, based in Atlanta
  • Rick Price - now @ KIRO-TV
  • Eric Schudiske - now @ KING-TV
  • Melody Mendez - now @ KDVR-TV in Denver as of August 2010

TrafficEdit

  • Trooper Monica Hunter - KOMO 4 Morning News Traffic Anchor (was a Washington State Patrol trooper working for KOMO News as a traffic reporter)
  • Rick VanCise - Now @ KIRO-TV
  • Jenni Hogan - Now @ KIRO-TV
  • Rachelle Murcia - Moving to KGET SoCal Aug. 2011

Northwest AfternoonEdit

  • Elisa Jaffe - Northwest Afternoon Co-host
  • Kent Phillips - Northwest Afternoon Co-host
  • Dick Foley - Northwest Afternoon Co-host
  • Dana Middleton - Northwest Afternoon Co-host
  • Natasha Curry - Northwest Afternoon Co-host

Current Personality Quick FactsEdit

KOMO anchors Dan Lewis, Kathi Goertzen & weather forecaster Steve Pool have the 3rd longest-running tenure out of any anchor team in America, having anchored KOMO News together since 1987. The station's evening newscast has long been co-anchored by Lewis & Goertzen & was praised by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer as being the "Best First-String anchor unit in town." The show now airs @ 6 PM, but originally aired from 5-6 PM & 6:30-7 PM until August 14, 2006 when it made the 5 PM newscast a half-hour & moved ABC World News Tonight to 5:30 PM in order to compete with KIRO-TV's airing of the CBS Evening News & to challenge KIRO's Eyewitness News @ 6 PM.

Dan Lewis came to KOMO in 1987 after working @ WJLA in Washington DC, replacing retiring news anchor Jim Harriott. Previous to his work with WJLA, he also worked for WISN-TV, also in Milwaukee, Wisconsin & @ WLKY-TV in Louisville, Kentucky. In 1993, he became the 1st reporter to interview then-president Bill Clinton following the inauguration ceremony. The interview was conducted @ the White House. On October 1 2007, KOMO celebrated Dan Lewis' 20 year tenure with KOMO. His 1st newscast with KOMO which aired on September 21 1987, among scores of other highlights were part of a 5-minute long tribute KOMO aired to celebrate his career. His 20 year tenure is the 4th longest tenure in Seattle.

Kathi Goertzen joined KOMO-TV just after the Mount St. Helens eruption in 1980, fresh from the Washington State University. Prior to her work with KOMO, she was an intern for Spokane's KREM-TV & also was an anchor for WSU's campus newscast. In 1981, Goertzen became a general assignment reporter & took weekend news anchoring duties from Kerry Brock in 1982. In 1984, she became the female co-anchor for the weeknight editions of "KOMO 4 News" alongside Jim Harriott. In 1989, she was the 1st American local TV news reporter to broadcast live from Germany as the Berlin Wall came down. Her broadcasts originated @ the Brandenburg Gate from what was then known as "West Berlin." After a 3-year absence from the late-night newscasts to spend time with her 2 daughters, she returned to KOMO on January 3, 2007.

On Sept. 16th 2005, Goertzen announced she was taking a leave of absence to treat a benign brain tumor. She had a similar one removed 7 years before. Upon her return to work then, co-anchor Dan Lewis welled up with tears, saying "Kathi, don't ever leave me like that again." Kathi announced on April 2 2008, that she would have a 3rd surgery to remove the brain tumor that had once again grown to the point that removal was necessary.

Weatherman Steve Pool has been @ KOMO since 1977, starting out as KOMO's lead science reporter. In 1984, Pool was promoted into the role of chief weather forecaster upon the retirement of former longtime weather forecaster Ray Ramsey & has held the position @ KOMO ever since. In 2006, he co-wrote a book called "Somewhere I Was Right: Why Northwest Weather is So Predictably Unpredictable" with KOMO-TV producer Scott Sistek. Steve Pool also has a column titled "Ask Steve" in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Additionally, Steve Pool has been called in on a number of occasions to substitute for the GMA weather anchor (his last substitute fill-in was when Spencer Christian was @ GMA), having done so from both the KOMO Weather Center & the GMA studios in New York City.

KOMO reporter Bryan Johnson has been with KOMO for more than 4 decades. In 2002, he celebrated 40 years @ KOMO. Having started @ KOMO Radio & actually serving as KOMO Radio's news director, he moved to KOMO-TV in 1976 & has been a reporter & anchor @ KOMO-TV ever since. His reporting has won him several Emmy awards & a National Unity in Broadcasting award.

Reporter Keith Eldridge is also a longtime reporter @ KOMO. Having been with the station since 1983, he often reports on political issues & news issues in the south Puget Sound area of Washington State. In, 1996 & 1999, he was the only reporter to cover the extensive flooding of the Skokomish River valley during a period of unusually heavy rain. In the 1996 flooding event, he actually became stranded for 3 days, as well as 2 other KOMO news vehicles & 1 other reporter, as the raging Skokomish River ripped up stretches of Highway 101. His route north was also blocked by large landslides that also blocked stretches of 101. His reporting has won him several Emmy awards & has been twice the recipient of the Associated Press' "Reporter of the Year" for the State of Washington.

KOMO sports director Eric Johnson came to KOMO in 1994, replacing KOMO weekend sports anchor & former KOMO Radio broadcaster Bob Rondeau. In 1998, he was named weeknight sports anchor & sports director upon the retirement of longtime KOMO sports director Bruce King. The 1997 movie Prefontaine, a movie dedicated to distance runner Steve Prefontaine, lists a very young Eric Johnson in the credits as the "Olympic Trials Reporter." In 2006, it was announced in a Seattle Post-Intelligencer article that Johnson will succeed Dan Lewis as KOMO's primary anchor upon Lewis' retirement.

AwardsEdit

KOMO-TV & it's news division is a consistent award winning operation & averages more wins per year than any Seattle TV station. In 2002, "KOMO 4 News" was awarded the Edward R. Murrow award for best large market newscast. They were awarded the same award in 2008. In June of 2008, KOMO was awarded 15 regional Emmy awards, taking top honors in Station Excellence, Morning News, Evening News, Breaking News & Team Coverage. KOMO anchor/reporter Molly Shen won the prestigious Individual Achievement award for the 2nd time in 3 years & longtime anchor Kathi Goertzen took home a Silver Circle award, recognizing her 25+ years with the station.

KOMO in Popular CultureEdit

In the movie Life or Something Like It (2002), Angelina Jolie's character works for a fictional Seattle TV station, KQMO 4, which is based on the real-life KOMO-TV. Parts of the movie were shot on location @ KOMO's studio & KOMO's equipment was also shown in some scenes (with KOMO's logo on the equipment & in the studio modified to say "KQMO" instead). Some of KOMO's anchors (such as Steve Pool, Margo Myers, Dan Lewis & Theron Zahn) also made appearances in the movie. (Margo Myers has since moved to rival KIRO-TV)

Longtime anchors Dan Lewis & Kathi Goertzen also made a brief appearance in the movie Assassins (1995) starring Antonio Banderas & Sylvester Stallone.

In Harry & the Hendersons (1986) starring John Lithgow, then-hosts Dana Middleton & Dick Foley of KOMO-TV's Northwest Afternoon made an appearance as news anchors on KOMO 4 News, reporting the mysterious appearance of a Sasquatch in downtown Seattle. Several of KOMO-TV's news vehicles, bearing KOMO's old logo & paint scheme, also made an appearance.

In the movie Black Sheep starring Chris Farley & David Spade, a KOMO News vehicle & a fictionalized version of the KOMO News 4 anchor team are seen in a sequence close to the ending of the movie. The only other real-life Washington State TV station to be featured (even though it was only a news vehicle) in the movie is KCPQ Ch. 13 (even though @ the time KCPQ had no news program).

A person holding a KOMO camera makes a brief appearance in the beginning of the 1974 Warren Beatty thriller Parallex View.

In WarGames, a KOMO newscast featuring then-anchor Jim Harriott describes the 1st incidents between Matthew Broderick's character & the WOPR computer.

KOMO-TV & it's sister station in Portland, KATU-TV (the only ABC affiliates owned by Fisher Communications), were the only 2 stations in the lower 48 states that delayed Monday Night Football for 1 hour from 1970-95, to accommodate local newscasts. The only time that it would be shown live if the Seattle Seahawks were playing. However in 1996 after protests by fans both stations aired the games live, regardless of who was playing.

KOMO-TV's home, Fisher Plaza, is featured in bumper scenes of ABC's Grey's Anatomy as well as the helipad. In addition to the bumper scenes on Grey's Anatomy, stock footage of several KOMO personalities, including Dan Lewis, Kathi Goertzen, is used on several other ABC shows.

A KOMO-TV story of a bear being shot with a tranquilizer dart, then falling upon a home trampoline, catapulting it high into the air before plummeting back to earth head-1st became a favorite clip on the ESPN show Pardon the Interruption.

A popular video of an Auburn Senior High School cheerleader being run over by her school's football team, which made national & later global news (& even featured in Jay Leno & other late night talk show monologues), originally aired on KOMO-TV's "KOMO 4 News" as the sports segment's "Play of the Night."

DTV Edit

After the analog TV shutdown scheduled for February 17 2009, KOMO-DT will remain on ch. 38 using PSIP to display KOMO-TV's virtual ch. as 4 on DTV receivers.

News/Station PresentationEdit

KOMO-TV has used many names for their TV newscasts, below is a list of them & when they were used.

Newscast TitlesEdit

  • Deadline 195X (1953-1959)
  • KOMO 4 News (1959-1978,1984-1987 & 1998-present)
  • News 4 (1978-1984)
  • KOMO News 4 (1987-1998)

External linksEdit

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