WDBJ Roanoke's Hurst Signs Off to Launch Political Career

The anchor's decision comes a year and a half after the murder of his fiancee, reporter Alison Parker, on live TV

WDBJ Roanoke’s Chris Hurst, whose fiancée reporter Alison Parker was killed on-air in 2015, has left TV to launch a political career.

Hurst anchored his last newscast at the Gray-owned CBS affiliate Thursday and plans to run as a Democratic candidate for the Virginia house. Hurst says fighting gun violence will be a big part, but not the only part, of his campaign.

His political plans were first reported in The Roanoke Times.

Hurst's depature isn't a complete surprise. He first announced his plans to sign off from TV in January but had planned to stay on the job through the end of February.  At that time, Hurst said he needed to make a change but didn’t yet know what that would be.

“My life changed dramatically on August 26, 2015, when Alison Parker and (photographer) Adam Ward were killed while reporting a story live on this station. It was forever altered because, as you know, Alison was more than just my colleague. We were in love and planning our future together,” he said on the station’s website.

“In one moment my life, my direction, and my mission changed forever.”