The following people will be inducted into the television portion of the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame June 8 at Gio’s Ristorante and Bar in St. Louis. The members are:
John Auble came to St. Louis in 1967 to work for the old St. Louis Globe. After newspaper work in other cities, he returned to a job at KSD-TV. In 1988 he moved to KTVI. He scored a number of high-profile exclusives including the first interview with James Earl Ray (confessed assassin of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.), Coretta King, Rosa Parks, Olympian Wilma Rudolph, St. Louis Mafia don Mike Trupiano and Ike Turner, among others. He is credited with helping to free Patti Stallings after she was convicted of murdering her son by feeding him antifreeze. The child actually died from a rare genetic disorder. Among his honors are seven Emmy awards, induction into the NATAS “Silver Circle” for his lifetime achievements in the media, “Media Man of the Year” by the Missouri Police Chief’s Association and others.
Howard DeMere began his career in broadcasting working as an office boy at a cousin’s Texas radio station during the Great Depression. After serving in the U.S. Army he returned to Wichita Falls, TX, and ended up announcing at his school’s radio station. He transferred to the University of Oklahoma School of Journalism where one of his professors helped him get a job at Oklahoma’s signature radio station, WKY. Later, in October, 1949, he got a job in St. Louis at KSD Radio and the fledgling KSD-TV, where he worked until retiring in 1979. He is remembered as a weather broadcaster at Channel 5 and for his signature sign-off, “That’s all from here…Howard DeMere.”
Ray Hoffstetter joined KSD-TV as a stagehand in February, 1948, when the station was one year old. He moved up through the positions of film crew sound man, film cameraman, video cameraman and creative services tape editor. His video of Lou Brock’s record-setting stolen base is used in the Baseball Hall of Fame at Cooperstown. His shooting assignments included Operation Desert Shield, riding on the Battleship M
issouri to the Pearl Harbor 50th anniversary, Hurricane Camille, the Knoxville World’s Fair, Baseball and Football Hall of Fame inductions, and presidential interviews. Even after retirement in 1992, Hoffstetter continued with KSDK, working with the station’s video archives.
Herb Humphries was the 300-pound KMOX-TV/KMOV-TV reporter who showed up at crime scenes wearing cowboy boots and a Stetson hat quickly won the hearts of the viewing public in a love affair that lasted 20 years. His nighttime reports were quickly dubbed “Nightside,” a franchise that gave Humphries almost blanket access to anyplace the news was happening. Humphries was appreciated in the newsroom for his sense of humor and his ability to quickly assess any news situation and quickly get his stories on the air. Having won national awards for his work prior to coming to St. Louis and having initially been hired as Channel 4’s news director, he shined brightest doing what he most enjoyed, working as one of the market’s best-remembered street reporters.
Sharon Stevens worked as education reporter at both KSDK-TV and
KTVI-TV. Her television career began at WGBH-TV in Boston. A native Chicagoan and graduate of Northern Illinois University, Stevens was nominated for two Emmy awards and in 2010 received the Silver Circle Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (NATAS). Stevens also was honored by the Missouri Press Women, Associated Press, the National Association of Black Journalists, NABJ, where she also served as Vice-President/Broadcast and the Greater St. Louis Association of Black Journalists, the Missouri Association of School Administrators and the Gateway Classic Foundation. She also tutored and mentored hundreds of students locally and at North Carolina A&T State University.
Parker Wheatley came to KMOX-TV in St. Louis following an 11-year stint at WGBH radio and television in Boston where he was the station manager. Prior to that he apprentices at radio stations in Indiana and Chicago. His career at KMOX-TV/KMOV-TV began in 1958 as director of public affairs. He produced a daily “Eye On St. Louis” program that included Dr. Martin Luther King as a guest. After retirement, he was still seen for another 14 years on the station’s “The People Speak” public affairs programs. He had a commitment to producing serious programming on commercial television and received numerous awards, including a citation from the Lovejoy Society for his contributions to civil and human rights.