SYRACUSE PRESS CLUB
Ron Curtis got an early start on his career. He was only 15 when he was hired by WFBL as a radio announcer. While still a teenager, Ron got his first national honor - the Billboard Award - for his coverage of the homecoming reception of Gen. Jonathan Wainwright, the hero of Bataan and Corregidor in the Phillippines after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.
At WFBL, Ron rose to program director before he moved to WHEN radio and television (now WTVH) as announcer and, later, Atlantic weatherman.
In 1966, Ron was named news anchor, the position he held until his retirement in December, 2000.
During his career, Ron received many awards and honors. He was a two-time winner of the Outstanding Syracuse Broadcaster award from Alpha Epsilon Rho at Syracuse University; three-time winner of the New York State Broadcaster's Award for public affairs; the 1984 Communicator of the Year award from the Syracuse Ad Club; and the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Syracuse Press Club.
Ron's anchoring of the Dec. 22, 1988, explosion of Flight 103 over Scotland, which took the lives of 270 people, including 35 with connections to Syracuse University and Central New York, won him a regional Emmy, television's highest award. On that evening, Ron anchored WTVH's evening news from the SU campus, devoting the entire broadcast to the tragedy.
The New York City Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences judged that broadcast the "Outstanding Newscast" of 1988-89, beating out all entries from a number of network stations.
In 1999, the Academy again honored Ron by inducting him in its Silver Circle, an organization of media professionals with at least 25 years broadcasting experience who have made significant contributions to both the industry and community. Ron was in good company with such well-known inductees as Walter Cronkite and Dan Rather.
Ron Curtis died from cancer at the age of 74 on Nov. 29, 2001. --Joseph A. Porcello