Radio-TV Broadcast History

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WRIC-TV Channel 8 is the ABC affiliate television station for the Richmond, Virginia market. It is owned by Young Broadcasting. The station is licensed to nearby Petersburg, while its studios are just off the Powhite Parkway extension (State Route 76) on Arboretum Place in western Chesterfield County (unincorporated Richmond). It broadcasts its analog signal on channel 8 from a transmitter that is located nearby. Its analog signal penetrates as far north as Gainesville and Centreville and as far south as the North Carolina state line around Lake Gaston in Bracey, Mecklenburg County.

Petersburg-Richmond, Virginia
Branding WRIC TV 8 (general)

8 NEWS (newscasts)

Slogan Straight To The Point

Live, Local, Latebreaking

Channels Digital: 22 (UHF)
Subchannels 8.1 ABC
Owner Young Broadcasting, Inc.

(operated by Gray Television) (Young Broadcasting of Richmond, Inc.)

First air date August 15, 1955
Call letters' meaning W-RIChmond
Former callsigns WXEX-TV (1955-1990)
Former channel number(s) Analog:

8 (VHF, 1955-2009)

Former affiliations NBC (1955-1965)
Transmitter power 450 kW (digital)
Height 328 m (digital)
Facility ID 74416
Transmitter coordinates 37°30′45″N 77°36′5″W / 37.5125°N 77.60139°W / 37.5125; -77.60139

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The station began operation in 1955 as WXEX-TV, an NBC affiliate. It was originally licensed to Petersburg and was owned by Thomas Tinsley, operating as Petersburg Television. During the 1950s, 1960s, 1970s and early 1980s, WXEX had an AM sister station, WLEE-AM, who maintained a separate location in Richmond on West Broad St. The TV station's transmitter was located in the Bermuda Hundred area of eastern Chesterfield County and the station reached not only Petersburg, but Richmond as well, albeit with a weaker signal than the two stations licensed to Richmond at the time. The main studios were located in Petersburg. At first, a Richmond sales office was co-located with sister station WLEE-AM on W. Broad St; later, satellite studios were established just off Midlothian Turnpike in Bon Air, Virginia, a suburb of Richmond.

The station had been an NBC affiliate for many years, but switched to ABC in 1965 and has been with that network ever since. In 1968 the station (along with sister station WLEE-AM) was sold to Nationwide Communications; Nationwide would sell WRIC and the rest of its television stations to Young Broadcasting in 1993.

In 1969, a fire destroyed its original Petersburg studios. For a few weeks, the station had to broadcast from its transmitter, then set up temporary offices and studios in a vacated store in Petersburg. The station later moved in a brand new facility on Crater Road that it named Blandford Manor.

In 1981 Nationwide sold off sister station WLEE-AM.

WXEX's call letters were changed on April 23, 1990 to WRIC-TV and the station moved its studios to the current location in The Arboretum Office Park in Chesterfield County. However, it is still licensed to Petersburg; unlike the other stations in the market, it identifies as "Petersburg/Richmond."

The station's owner, Young Broadcasting, went into Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2009. The station was part of a bankruptcy auction scheduled for July 14, 2009 but cancelled at the last minute[1]. On July 22, a bankruptcy judge approved a plan in which Young's secured lenders would take over the company and outsource the management of seven of its 10 stations including WRIC to Gray Television. Final approval of the deal from the Federal Communications Commission is still pending. After the analog television shutdown and digital conversion was completed on June 12, 2009, WRIC-DT post-transition remained on channel 22.[2] Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers continue to display WRIC-DT's virtual channel as 8.1.

On-air staff[]

Current on-air staff[]


  • Juan Conde - Weekdays & Weeknights 5, 5:30, 6 and 11 p.m.
  • Christina Feerick - Weekdays & Weeknights 5, 5:30, 6 and 11 p.m.
  • Amy Lacey - Weekday Morning Anchor
  • A.J. Lagoe - Weekday Noon Anchor
  • Morgan Dean - Weekend Mornings
  • Kerri O'Brien - Evening Anchor Explainer
  • Amie McLain - Weekday Morning Anchor Explainer
  • Lindsey Henley - Weekend Evenings


  • Morgan Dean
  • Rochelle Dean
  • Kerri O'Brien
  • Kim Schumacher
  • Chelsea Washington
  • Nate Eaton
  • Katelyn Sherwood
  • Catherine Hawley
  • Josh Landon
  • Laura Morris
  • Lindsey Henley


  • John Bernier - Chief Meteorologist
  • Matt DiNardo
  • Paul Milliken
  • Jason Myers


  • Dax Gray
  • Phil Orban - Weekend Anchor
  • Chip Tarkenton - Sports Director/Weekday Anchor

Former on-air staff[]

  • Ric Barrick - Meteorologist
  • Anita Blanton- Morning Anchor/Reporter
  • Gretchen Carlson - Reporter/Anchor
  • Keri Abbott Carro - Meteorologist
  • Lou Charlip - Sports Anchor/Reporter
  • Craig Civale - Reporter
  • Bruce Cunningham - Sports Director
  • Derrick Dennis - Reporter
  • Vernon Glenn - Sports Reporter/Anchor 1985 to 1987, now at KRON-TV in San Francisco
  • Matt Lauer - host of "PM Magazine" in the 1980s.
  • Doug Luzader - Reporter
  • Mara MacDonald - Reporter
  • Pam Magee - Reporter, News Director
  • Laura Main - Reporter/Anchor
  • Chesley McNeil - Weather/Mr. Outside
  • Carole Meekins - Anchor
  • Jim Ramsey - Weather Anchor; now at WGN-TV in Chicago
  • Richard Real - Reporter, Managing Editor
  • Frank Robertson - Anchor
  • Rucks Russell - Reporter; now at KHOU-TV Houston, TX
  • Lisa Schaffner - Anchor
  • Ken Strayhorn - Sports Director
  • Cheryl Tan - Weekend Anchor; Now at Wavy 10 and Fox 43 in Hampton Roads,Va
  • Mike Topham - Sports Photographer/Reporter
  • Ric Young - Anchor
  • Rich Landrum - News Reporter and co-host of "Dialing for Dollars". Much better known in later years as the host for the nationally syndicated TV show, "World Wide Wrestling".
  • Barbara Trear - (better known to the staff as "BJ", short for Barbara Jeane)Co-host of "Dialing for Dollars" & Special Events Reporter. Better known now throughout Maryland, DC & Northern Virginia, for her jazz band, "The BJ Doyle Trio".
  • Tracy Butler - Meteorologist
  • Sal Urbano - Sports Anchor
  • Gwen Williams - Anchor
  • Jason Guy - Reporter; now at WESH-TV Orlando, FL

1972—First "Eyewitness News" team

  • Anchorman - Charles McMahon
  • Co-Anchor - Bill McGowan
  • Sports - Floyd Henderson
  • Weather - Don Kesler

News/station presentation[]

Newscast titles[]

  • Newsday/Newsnight (1966-?)
  • TV-8 Eyewitness News (1972-? and ?–1992)
  • TV-8 Live Eyewitness News
  • TV-8 News (1992–1990s)
  • 8 News (1990s–present)

Station slogans[]

  • Making a Difference (early 1990s-1995)
  • Richmond's News People (1995-late 1990s)
  • Your Local News Source (2000–2004)
  • Straight To The Point (2004–present; primary news slogan)
  • Live, Local, Latebreaking (late 1990s-present; secondary news slogan)

[2] This film, television or video-related list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it with reliably sourced additions.==Trivia==

  • In the late 1960s, a weatherman at the station named Hugh Allen was arrested and convicted of manslaughter.
  • The station had a very popular show in the seventies that reached almost cult status in Richmond called "Shock Theater", a horror movie show that was hosted by station employee Bill Bowman , as a character called "The Bowman Body" that became very popular in the Richmond market.
  • A fake WRIC newscast is seen in the 2001 film Hannibal, with reporter Ric Young playing himself. The film was shot on location in Richmond.
  • The station received some unwanted publicity in 1989 when former evening news anchor Steve Coleman got into an argument with a news producer and his co-anchor, Lisa Schaffner, tried to intervene and was pushed by Coleman, crashing into a desk and a computer. Coleman was suspended and later fired.
  • WRIC was the only ABC affiliate not to air the millenium special ABC 2000 Today.


  1. ^ A vulture's eye view of Young
  2. ^

External links[]