Breaking News!!: Hollywood, CA: The great Stan Chambers of KTLA 5 has passed away.
The great Stan Chambers, a pioneer in journalism at CW affiliate KTLA Channel 5 and a great, friendly, and well respected man I and many journalists looked up to as a mentor in journalism, has passed away at the age of 91 years old.
Stan Chambers passed away at 10:30am PT on Friday, February 13th, 2015 at his home in Holmby Hills, California with his family by his side.
** Life and Career of Stan Chambers: **
Stanley Holroyd “Stan” Chambers was born in Los Angeles, California on Saturday, August 11th, 1923 and grew up in Mid-Wilshire District, California.
Stan Chambers’ father died when he was 4 years old and his mother worked as a movie extra and bit player to support Stan Chambers and his brother, Dave.
A graduate of Loyola High School, where Stan Chambers enjoyed taking speech classes,
Stan Chambers then enrolled at Loyola University, where he took more speech classes and wrote a column for the school newspaper.
Joining the United States Navy’s officer training program, Stan Chambers was transferred to University of Southern California (U.S.C.) for his senior year.
After graduating in 1944, Stan Chambers attended Pre-Midshipmen School in New Jersey.
Stan Chambers volunteered to be trained as a fighter director, but the war ended before Stan Chambers finished his training.
Stan Chambers joined KTLA as a production assistant in December 1947, less than a year after Channel 5 went on the air as the first commercially licensed television station in the western United States of America.
During Stan Chambers’ early years at KTLA, Stan Chambers appeared on camera in a variety of roles.
Stan Chambers co-hosted “Tricks and Treats” which was a 15 minute morning cooking show with home economist Corris Guy.
Stan Chambers then co-hosted “City at Night” which was a live program broadcast from remote locations around Los Angeles, California.
Stan Chambers then put on ice skates to host “Frosty Frolics” which was a broadcast live from the Polar Palace in Hollywood, California.
In the early 1960s, Stan Chambers worked as a staff announcer, doing a daily “Telecopter News” broadcasts, and moonlighted as a game show announcer.
As a KTLA Channel 5 reporter over the ensuing 6 decades, Stan Chambers reported on 22,000 news stories.
In 1949, Stan Chambers reported on the Kathy Fiscus water-well tragedy in San Marino, California in 1949 where a 3 year old girl had fallen into a narrow abandoned well pipe and for 27 1/2 hours, Stan Chambers and Bill Welsh continuously reporting the unsuccessful attempt to rescue the little girl who was wedged in the 14 inch wide well pipe some 90 feet underground. KTLA viewers remained riveted to their TV sets throughout the unfolding ordeal, the incident dramatically demonstrating the power of television in providing live coverage of news events and has been called the first live broadcasted breaking news story.
In 1952, Stan Chambers did the first live telecast of an atomic bomb test at the Nevada Test Site.
Stan Chambers also covered the Bel Air/Brentwood fire in 1961, the Baldwin Hills dam disaster in 1963, the Watts riots in 1965, the assassination of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy in 1968, the Sylmar earthquake in 1971, the Olympics in 1984, and many more news stories.
Another notable news story, Stan Chambers broke the news story of the beating of black motorist Rodney G. King by Los Angeles Police Department Officers following a police pursuit in 1991 after KTLA Channel 5 received an amateur home video of the incident shot by George Holliday from his Lake View Terrace, California balcony.
In 1992, Stan Chambers covered the Los Angeles Riots after 4 white Los Angeles Police Department Officers were acquitted of using excessive force of black motorist Rodney G. King.
In January 1994, Stan Chambers covered the 1994 Northridge Earthquake which woke many people out of bed in the early morning hours causing damages, injuries, and deaths.
In 2006, the Society of Professional Journalists honored Stan Chambers with the Helen Thomas Lifetime Achievement Award.
Stan Chambers retired from KTLA on his 87th birthday in August 2010 after covering many of Southern California’s biggest news stories.
Stan Chambers received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and a building named after him at KTLA Channel 5 in Hollywood, California.
Stan Chambers won numerous local Emmy and Golden Mike awards, among the many others awards.
Stan Chambers received the prestigious Governor’s award in 1985 from the Los Angeles Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for career achievement.
In 2005, Stan Chambers became the first recipient of the Greater Los Angeles Society of Professional Journalists’ Lifetime Achievement Award.
Today’s passing of a great journalist, family man, and friendly person to all people, Stan Chambers’ passing has touched many in the journalism globe including Zachary A. Lopez of ZachNews.
“I grow up wanting to become a news reporter and Stan Chambers was the journalist I looked up to. In late May 2002, I got to met the great Stan Chambers well he was at an apartment explosion on Newcastle Avenue in Encino, California. I was starstruck and was shaken well I was holding my little tablet and pen. I walked up to him and I introduce myself and he said, “Hello Zachary, nice to meet you.” I talked for him for a bit and shocking, he asked me if I wanted to help him with the camera which I said yes well I was jumping for joy inside. The way he showed respect to people and how people respected and loved him was something I will never forget. I remember seeing people who were other reporters from other television stations shaking his hand with a smile. I saw people who were scared about the explosion smile when Stan Chambers walked up to them and it was like he being there was a sign that everything is going to be alright. I am so hurt that the journalism globe has lost a great man and I will deeply miss him so much as he brought me joy and happiness during times I was hurting and depress. I miss you Stan Chambers,” said Zachary A. Lopez of ZachNews.
Stan Chambers’ wife Beverly, with whom he had 11 children, died of cancer in 1989.
Besides his 11 children, Stan Chambers is survived by his wife Gege, 38 grandchildren, and 8 great grandchildren.
Jaime Chambers is the grandson of the legendary Stan Chambers and is following in his footsteps in reporting on the news joining CW affiliate KSWB Fox 5 San Diego which is KTLA’s sister station in San Diego, California.
**** ZachNews send our thoughts, prayers, and condolences to the families and friends of Stan Chambers. The journalism globe has lost a great man and friend to all people. We will never forget Stan Chambers. We all will miss Stan Chambers. ****
** Pictures was courtesy of KTLA and Wikipedia. **