Thursday, July 8, 2021



Let me tell you about Jill Garrett.

I'm going to butcher the line, and I will attempt it anyway.  A person's true value lies in the way they make other people feel.

I arrived at WNEP in the summer of 1998, fresh from the competition.  I wasn't just the competition.  I was the pain in the arse competition.  Many felt I would fit in, that I wasn't WNEP caliber.  I was too rough around the edges.  Undisciplined.  Unqualified.  Thankfully, News Director Paul Steuber talked with people who really knew me, and Paul became satisfied he was making a good hire.  Be that it as may, there were still several non believers on the staff, and I was radioactive to those individuals.

And then, there was Jill.  She could not have been more kind, more wecoming, and more professional.  Warm.  Friendly.  It was special to me.  It wasn't to Jill.  Kindness was just Jill being Jill.  It was who she was.

It should be noted that Jill Garret was a pioneer, the first woman of color, on local televison and I knew that wasn't easy.  She tackled that assignment like she did everything else-- with class, dignity, and yes, kindness.

Jill Garret died Tuesday.  She was 66.  Only 66.

I'm glad I knew her. I'm glad I worked with her.  You are lucky she was in your homes every night.