Random Career Photo: NBC News Anchor Jessica Savitch

I can’t remember the date on this one.  Summer 1979 maybe.

Me and NBC News Washington Anchor Jessica Savitch on the set.   Jessica was one of the first women to anchor a network evening newscast.  I was audio on the program for a few months before I went into the field full time.  She was a serious woman journalist .The crew loved working with her.  Tragedy took her just a few years after this photo. She drowned in a creek in an overturned car.  I had a secret crush on her.


Random career photo. At the Oscars!

wa4d Oscars Set up 2013

On the Red Carpet at 7:30am day before the Oscars



I worked at the Academy Awards show for 9 years. It was a 2 week project in February each year.  I had the best job in the place!  Red Carpet  multi-cam coverage. We produced an international show (Non-Broadcast) streamed to the WORLD.   — the fans the stars the whole scene was a blast. Hollywood Blvd: Ground Zero of Celebrity Worship!!  The streaming show got tons of social media feedback. Never underestimate the global interest in American entertainment!

Year: 2012

Career Flash-Back: “Special Event Station” at trial of would-be Presidential assassin John Hinckley

1982 Hinckley Beach

In June 1982 as a Cameraman for NBC News based in Washington D.C. every Saturday for a month I was assigned to stake out the U.S. Federal Courthouse where the trial of attempted Presidential assassin John Hinckley was underway. All the networks and the print media set up on the front lawn of the courthouse. (This was back when Federal Courthouse security was waaaay more lax than it is today.) Our job was to await new developments and the lawyers would periodically come out and stand in front of the microphones and update the press.  We in the Press Corps called the setting, “Hinckley Beach” since it was summer and little happened until the end of the trial.  We’d bring lawn chairs, coolers and umbrellas to beat the DC summer heat and humidity.

One weekend, I threw my Kenwood TS-130 HF rig in the microwave truck and and a Hustler Mobile Whip that I mounted on an upside down trash can (a faux ground) and set it up on the roof of the van. A Washington Post photographer thought my radio set up was interesting and shot the photo above. It didn’t make it into the paper, but he sent me a copy.

My recollection is, I worked alot of DX on 15 meters that day. Foreign Hams would express surprise when I told them where I was operating from. Surely operating from the courthouse would be prohibited!  I was on the air, MC-60 mic in hand when this photo taken. It was fun.

NOTE: Some years later (mid 90’s)  I would see Hinckley up close and photograph him thanks to (Bearcat Scanners)….but that’s another story for another time(and video too!)

It’s Veterans Day: “Don’t Thank me for my service”

Don’t Thank me for my service“. . .


Took Basic Training at Ft. Bliss Texas.  I was a Platoon Guide.  It was a Blast. Loved Basic Training.  AIT Score was in the top 3% Army Wide. (Well that’s what they told me! Ha!) The US Army was into “Big Data”  long before it was cool!



Fresh Ruck, heading to Chopper Pad for insertion into the Bush. Know what the difference between a “Cherry” and an experienced “Boonie Rat” is?  His RUCK.  That RUCK is tied down Hard!. I could throw it out of a chopper at 10-12 feet and it wouldn’t break open

The work horse of the helicopter war. a “Slick” or Huey UH1
101st ABN 1970
mew Slick Eagle copy
My Dog “Argo” on my leg.

I didn’t take a conventional R&R. — I was bitten by the Photography bug and I wanted a 35 mm Camera.  I couldn’t afford to go to Hawaii or Australia or Bangkok for a week. So I went to China Beach near DaNang.  First time I ever surfed was in the South China Sea. Man it was  fun. Surfed everyday all day on R&R. Oh and I got the Camera too.  A Yashica 35mm Range-Finder.


Presidential Citation

Bronze Star 2

No Ceremony. No Handshake.

The Combat Infantry Badge. Among the most coveted awards in the U.S. Army.cib-1-1


                                    The Combat Infantry Award


There’s only 1 reason to join the Army (in my opinion). And that is to be in the Infantry.                           To be at the tip of the spear.


I left Vietnam (Cam Rahn Bay)  on June 30 and was honorably discharged on July 2, 1971.  10 Days later I was a student at the University of Texas at Austin. I was one very Lucky young man

I went back to Vietnam and shot a documentary in 1995. We traveled the county.. It was an amazing trip.

1995 Doc SHOOT copy

At an American bomber crash site from 1967. 300 coolies digging in the mud. They found the pilot’s ID badge and an old .38 pistol in the wreckage the day we were there.


The series, “20 Years since the Fall” won 2 Regional Emmy Awards


Jim Vance (left) Regarded by many as one of the finest Journalists of his generation.

My friend and former colleague, Jim Vance reported and wrote the program.  It was a personal and professional milestone for me.  I “hung up” my camera after this project went to grad school and took a Masters degree and went into management at NBC. Later moving to the west coast to work for Disney owned ABC.

The Vietnam War played a very influential role in my career. I wouldn’t change  any of it.

What else does the “Dog” do?

Here in Charlottesville, Va home of the University of Virginia there is an on campus guest speaker program open to the public. I go to these often.

In October three Professors discussed the British Exit from the European Union.   Each brought a different view.  A political science professor. A European economics prof and a History professor.  I got in the last question from the audience. I asked, “What would Winston  Churchill have thought of BREXIT?” 

Photos: WA4D

Anyway I look forward to these meetings!