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KDKA-TV's Harold Hayes Retires After 40 Years In Broadcasting

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - After 40 years in broadcasting, veteran KDKA-TV reporter Harold Hayes is retiring.

A native of McKeesport, Harold is a graduate of South Hills High School and the University of Pittsburgh.

He has spent 37 years of his 40-year career in Pittsburgh.

Harold reflects on his career:

Harold began his career in 1976 at WSIV-AM/FM in Pekin, Illinois.

A year later, he moved to television and spent the next two years working at WRAU-TV in Peoria, Illinois.

WEB EXTRA: Farewells to Harold:

On Aug. 13, 1979, he was hired at KDKA-TV and returned to his hometown.

Since then, Harold has covered everything from countless breaking news stories to landmark local court cases. In fact, Harold has probably logged more hours in courtrooms than many lawyers.

He covered the 1985 Pittsburgh drug trial, which exposed Major League Baseball's cocaine scandal, the 1990 Pittsburgh Mob trials, the trials of the police officers accused in the death of Jonny Gammage in 1996, and more recently, the murder trials of Richard Baumhammers, Ronald Taylor, Richard Poplawski, Donna Moonda and Robert Ferrante. Harold also covered the child sex abuse trial of former Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky from start to finish.

Harold has also traveled across the country and overseas to report for KDKA-TV. He reported from Saudi Arabia in 1990, during Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm, and from Kuwait in 1993 at the memorial for the local lives lost during that same conflict.

In 2005, Harold reported from The Vatican at the funeral of Pope John Paul II.

ONE-ON-ONE With Harold Hayes:

Part 1:

Part 2:

Locally, Harold also followed up on stories that made headlines years ago and still have an impact on the community. For example, he covered the 1981 court-ordered desegregation that resulted in the creation of the Woodland Hills School District.

Twenty years later, he found one of the students he interviewed back then who had become a parent of a graduate that year. Harold names that story as his favorite because the idea of sitting the father and daughter down to discuss their experiences in the same school at two very different times for the school was so simple, yet so profound.

Harold has also worked tirelessly with many community groups, including the Negro Educational Emergency Drive, or NEED. Harold is a former NEED scholarship recipient, and he now serves as the group's spokesman. After his mother's death in 1994, Harold created a scholarship in her name for local students. He also helps raise money for the Rev. J. Harold Hayes Scholarship, named for his late father, the former pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church in McKeesport.

After 40 years in news, there isn't much that Harold hasn't covered. Because of that, he was always able to provide a wealth of knowledge and perspective not only to our newsroom but more importantly to the viewers.

The legacy that Harold leaves is that of a valuable, dependable and trusted member of local media. He's a man who's spent 40 years delivering news that's honest, accurate and fair.

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