G. McConway
May 10, 2023

Legendary Fox 5 New York Anchor John Roland Dead at 81

For almost three decades, John Roland's voice was likely the last voice that most New Yorkers heard before they went to bed.

He led the 10:00 p.m. nightly news for the local Fox News station from the 1970s until he retired in 2004.

Sadly, Roland passed away this week at 81 years old, reports the New York Times.

A Legend

Ronald started his career in the 1960s, working for NBC News in California. In 1969, he transitioned over to WNEW-TV, which at the time was owned by MetroMedia. This would later become WNYW, a Fox station, and that is where he stayed until he retired.

When Roland first joined the station, he was the weekday political reporter as well as the weekend nightly anchor. In 1979, he took over the weekday anchor desk, and that is where he remained until he retired from the business.

He covered some of the nation's biggest tragedies, including the assassination of JFK and the horrific events of 9/11.

Roland's former co-anchor Rosanna Scotto stated, "Sitting next to John was always a learning lesson.

"He took pride in his writing and his down-to-earth communicating. It was never more evident than anchoring next to him during the 9/11 attacks," reports Fox News.

Not only did he report the news, but he found himself the subject of a couple of news stories during his career.

For instance, in 1983, there was an attempted robbery while Roland was dining at a local spot in New York City. Roland wrestled with one of the robbers, shooting the man in the leg. The other two managed to get the upper hand on Roland, pistol-whipping him in the process.

In 1988, Roland gained national headlines for an argument with Joyce Brown that was going out live. Brown was a mentally ill homeless woman.

Ironically, had he done that today, he would probably be fired for it.

Roland is survived by his wife, Zayda.

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