Bob Lobel Recalls Jack Williams As ‘A Natural’ At Connecting With Viewers
BOSTON (CBS) – WBZ-TV News anchor Jack Williams is stepping down from his full-time anchor duties this week after 39 years with the station.
Many of those years on the desk were spent with former WBZ sports anchor Bob Lobel.
Photos: Jack Williams Through The Years
Looking back on those days, Lobel shared memories recently of his friend and longtime colleague.
He recalled Williams as an “actor,” adding that he didn’t mean that in a negative way.
“He was an actor and he performed,” Lobel said. “There’s nothing wrong with that. Reading the news, delivering the news, performing, whatever. He was damn good at it.”
Lobel explained that Williams had a talent for connecting with viewers through the camera.
“You gotta remember, you’re talking to a machine first of all and you’ve got to get through that machine. Jack was really good at that,” Lobel said. “He was a natural.”
Lobel could not resist poking some fun at his old friend.
“He had some idiosyncrasies, that’s for sure,” he said. “Anybody that sticks around there for over 70 years or whatever he’s done.”
“He’s a little older than me, you know. Six weeks older.”
Lobel reminisced about his time on the WBZ news team with Williams, co-anchor Liz Walker, entertainment reporter Joyce Kulhawik and meteorologist Bruce Schwoegler. He said the fact they were friends first made them click as a team.
“I think we kind of enjoyed each other. I think we made each other laugh,” he said.
The uncontrollably honest Lobel admitted that “it wasn’t wine and roses all the time.” But he said they all recognized their “futures were tied together.”
Lobel remarked that in the 1980s in the Boston television market it was people, not stations that were branded. And Williams has a brand that has stayed strong over the years keeping him welcome in viewers homes.
“There’s a comfort to turning on a piece of furniture and seeing somebody that you’ve known and know what to expect from,” he said. “There’s no surprises with the people you genuinely like on television.”
Lobel said Williams is the last of his kind.
“He’s the last of – I won’t say the last of the Mohicans – but he’s the last of the Idahoes.”
Reminded that current WBZ news anchor Lisa Hughes, like Williams, is a native of Idaho, Lobel responded, “he’s next to the last of the Idahoes.”
Watch: Bob Lobel’s Message For Jack Williams
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