World News – CA – A tribute to BC news anchor Deb Hope


Beloved and respected presenter Deb Hope retired six years ago, at just 59.Even before her retirement, there were signs of Alzheimer’s disease that took her sent into a terrible decline

She read the news at 12 p.m., 5 p.m. and eventually on the station’s flagship newsletter, BCTV – now global – News Hour at 6 p.m., usually alongside Tony Parsons

She also had a famous laugh When meteorologist Wayne Cox or sports presenter Squire Barnes made it funny, she was losing it, with one of the most beautiful laughs in the world

And the laughter was real Deb was one of the most genuine people you have ever met – warm and always interested in everyone and everything

She may be one of the best-known people in the province, but there has never been an ego – self-confidence, yes, but no TV princess here

Deb retired six years ago when she was only 59. But even before she retired there were signs of Alzheimer’s disease that plunged Deb into terrible decline

Today, she is a shadow of herself, living in a retirement home, unable to recognize even her husband Roger or her two daughters Katherine and Roxanne or her stepdaughter Leah

Her decline has been rapid in recent years She lived at the home for several years, with Roger and his daughters supporting her, before entering a nursing home

« It was a heartbreaking journey, » said Roger « I mean, she’s still Deb Still wonderful, loving, gorgeous But she’s not the real Deb and she’s not with us anymore And it breaks everyone our hearts « 

While still reading the news, Deb had started to stumble over words or names.She was asking her producers the same questions about a story or about the subject she was going to interview

She’s always been a meticulous journalist, she always wanted to get it right Deb had never missed a beat But now it just didn’t seem to be in sync

Some in the control room said they were worried Deb seemed to be losing the plot But she was still young and Alzheimer’s never entered anyone’s mind We wondered if she needed glasses to see the teleprompter correctly

Deb came over a few days later and said, « Hey boss, good call I need new specs Everything will be fine now »

To her BCTV / Global family, Deb was more than what you saw on screen Much more She was, in many ways, station life You’ve heard her often before you see her

Former news director Steve Wyatt said Deb was a tough and determined reporter, but she never failed to balance, fairness and truth in every story that she told

“Deb was the best guardian of everything Global editorial staff was built upon,” said Wyatt “An unwavering commitment to good, well-edited images as the basis for impactful storytelling

« And in all the years we have worked together, Deb has made sure that she never ‘becomes the story’ at the expense of the content and every one of her colleagues who worked so hard alongside her »

Wyatt said he will always remember the beautiful moment she followed up with a family who decided their baby girl, born deaf, to receive cochlear implants, which were new and controversial at the time.

Deb and her cameraman captured the second baby heard her mother’s voice for the first time

Although she is known for her decades as a presenter, she was an award-winning and successful journalist for much of the 1980s before moving to anchor

Deb grew up in Trail and went to the University of BC, where she began to dive into journalism on campus radio.She gave up her early plans to become a lawyer because she believed journalism would be more fun

She started with The Canadian Press in Ottawa, where one of her first assignments was a puff play about Prince Charles, who was in town at Rideau Hall. In the middle of the interview, she realized that the prince was hitting her When she walked out the front door to leave, he followed her outside and walked her down the aisle She said it wasn’t until her masters came to her aid that she was able to get her to escape

In the years to come, she would dine with Queen Elizabeth twice while working for BCTV One of those dinners was on the Royal Yacht Britannia Later she would win an award for her coverage of the Queen’s visit

Deb was in Game 7 of the 1994 Stanley Cup Final in New York City She ended up watching the game with Vancouver Canucks owner Emily Griffiths When the Canucks lost Deb started crying and Emily turned to her and said, « Don’t worry honey, there will be more years »

There were so many stories – from crime to politics, from daring breakup stories to feature films – and she had the ability to cover them all

Her first news anchor was on the Noon News Soon after, she first appeared on the cover of TV Guide Her husband Roger, a cameraman at the same station, walked into a store and saw Deb on the cover of the magazine next to the cash register

« I thought to myself: OK, one for me, one for her, one for her mother and one for my mother So four TV guides Now the girl at the checkout sees me throw four magazines and says, ‘So , do you watch television a lot or what?  » I was totally embarrassed so I said, « No, it’s my wife » Then she said, « Yeah, you want to! «  »

Shortly after Deb’s retirement, an executive from Mining BC sent her the five stories from a mining series that she had done 20 years earlier He also sent a big thank you He stated that these stories had helped save the mining industry in BC, and they wanted her to know

But it is her tireless work for charities that will be remembered forever Deb was the face of the Variety Club for BCTV for over 20 years and worked for the Courage To Come Back group and the Down Syndrome Foundation

It’s time for her own story to be told She may find it hard to remember many of those days But many in this province will never forget

Clive Jackson and Ian Haysom were editor and news director of BCTV and later Global News in British Columbia, respectively

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Deb Hope

World News – CA – A tribute to BC news anchor Deb Hope



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