With the 10th anniversary of 9/11/01 just three weeks away, FishbowlNY interviewed three veteran anchors in New York City — Ernie Anastos of WNYW (pictured at right on 9/11/01 with co-anchor Dana Tyler), Bill Ritter of WABC and Chuck Scarborough of WNBC — about what they collectively call their most difficult professional experience, anchoring coverage on September 11. The three men recall finding their way to the studio, mourning missing colleagues and fighting to keep emotions out of their reporting:
“You feel like crying,” Anastos recalls. “You feel like being emotional, but you don’t have time for it.”
But Anastos, an award-winning anchor since 1978, did say he found time to check messages and make sure his family was alright.
However, once the mic was unclipped, the camera turned off, and the studio went black, it was another matter entirely.
“I remember …walking out of the station crying uncontrollably,” Ritter admits. “It just all came out. I had all the emotion that I was feeling, I was communicating to some degree, but not allowing myself to feel as personal, like I wanted to.”
Read the full interview today at FishbowlNY, and stay tuned for the rest of the 16-part series “9/11: New York Remembers,” which features interviews with various media personalities about their memories of September 11.