DCRTV.com reports that Bob McBride has died this week at age 83. Chicago old-timers will remember McBride (pictured right), who reportedly died Tuesday, as the WBBM-Ch. 2 weeknight newscaster succeeded by the then-unconventional anchor team of Walter Jacobson and Bill Kurtis back during the CBS-owned outlet's 1973 overhaul under station boss Bob Wussler and news chief Van Gordon Sauter. WBBM probably did McBride no favors by heralding his October 1971 arrival from Detroit's WJBK-TV to compete with WLS-Ch. 7's Fahey Flynn and WMAQ-Ch. 5's Floyd Kalber with a tongue-in-cheek two-page newspaper ad. As described by Chicago Tribune columnist Clarence Page, it touted McBride's "Chicago television debut as something akin to the Second Coming."
"If you watch Fahey or Floyd," the ad said, "you'll miss one of the most important events in WBBM-TV's history. The Chicago television premiere of Bob McBride."
The ad went on to talk about how McBride's hire was "the result of a lengthy search for a news broadcaster who could go up against Fahey and Floyd without getting his brains beat in" and noted "Bob was throlling thousands every night on Detroit television. Since he left, people have been walking around Detroit with their heads down, muttering, the thrill is gone. The thrill is gone"... Bob McBride, WBBM anchor preceded Kurtis and Jacobson in '73 (Thu, 2/3)