Gary Waddell, who has anchored KLAS Las Vegas newscasts since 1980, will retire from the Landmark-owned station. According to KLAS, Waddell is the longest tenured anchor in Southern Nevada's history.
"I am proud to have worked side by side with Gary for 32 years," said Emily Neilson, president and general manager of KLAS. "He is an excellent journalist who has unselfishly mentored many reporters, photojournalists and producers throughout the years. No one is more committed to this community. No one is a better friend."
During his time at KLAS, Waddell covered the MGM fire in 1980 and the PEPCON chemical fire and explosion in 1988. He covered the 1996 Democratic National Convention in Chicago and reported on the first anniversary of 9/11 from New York's Ground Zero.
Waddell will continue to anchor newscasts at noon, 4 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. until Aug. 3. He will join the KLAS team for coverage and perspective during major events. Waddell is also looking into creating long-form local programming for Vegas PBS, with cross promotion on KLAS, known locally as 8 News NOW.
"8 News NOW has been an amazing place to have been for the past 32 years," Waddell said. "I've had a front row seat on history, and have watched this community change dramatically. While it's been fun, I'm looking forward to the next phase of my life, without the responsibility of daily, Monday through Friday obligations. This has been an adventure that very few people get the chance to experience, and I leave with no regrets."
Word of his departure sparked considerable reaction on the KLAS website. "Alas, the television screen will become dim without you," commented Chris Amick. "Your professionalism, outstanding integrity, and character will be missed."