BOSTON (CBS) - Longtime WBZ-AM radio news anchor Gary LaPierre passed away Monday. He was 76.
LaPierre began his legendary career at WBZ in the mailroom as a college intern in the early 1960's and worked his way up to staff reporter and later morning news anchor. He would stay at WBZ NewsRadio 1030 for 40 years.
His first assignment as a reporter was to travel with the Beatles during the Boston portion of their first U.S. tour in 1964. He would go on to interview several presidents and receive dozens of awards. LaPierre showed dedication every day but notably, during the Blizzard of '78, he anchored the station's coverage for five consecutive days in the studio.
Keller @ Large: Gary LaPierre's Distinctive Voice Will Live On
LaPierre also spent some time in television, anchoring WBZ-TV's Noon newscasts for several years.
He retired from full-time duties at WBZ Radio on December 29, 2006.
Gary LaPierre was later inducted into the Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame. He also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the March of Dimes for his charitable work.
He is survived by his wife Peg and their two sons, Michael and Dean.
"I am deeply saddened by this news," said WBZ Director of Operations Bill Flaherty. "If you were looking to work hard and also have lots of fun, Gary was the guy you need to be with. My heart goes out to his wife Peg and his family."
WBZ's Former Program Director Peter Casey, who worked with LaPierre for two decades remembered him as a man of heart and compassion. "He was the perfect person to be the voice of WBZ and news radio for New England," Casey said. "His presence on the air, in the newsroom, and in our lives was huge."
LaPierre was born in Shelburne Falls and, in retirement, split his time between his homes on the North Shore of Massachusetts and the northeast coast of Florida.
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