On Thursday, WBRC, a branch of Fox 6 News, announced that one of their former news anchors had passed away. Bill Bolen was an Alabaman favorite and had a long, successful career in news and entertainment.
Bolen's interest in news, specifically radio, began when he was still in high school in Selma, Alabama. After high school, he earned his BA in Radio Arts at the University of Alabama.
In 1947, Bolen worked for a few different radio stations where he was an announcer, a disc jockey, a traffic and news reporter, and a promoter. In 1952, Bolen temporarily left his career to join the U.S. Air Force.
Bolen was reportedly appointed as the Personnel Services Officer at his Air Base located in Yuma, Arizona. He stayed active in both the Air Guard and Reserves until 1979, when he retired as a lieutenant colonel.
In 1954, Bolen returned to radio and entertainment. He started working for a popular AM station where he was called the "jack of all trades."
In 1965, the radio mogul switched to television. He worked for a CBS affiliate where he anchored two newscasts a day, was a street reporter, shot news film, and was the producer.
In 1969, Bolen made his way to the Fox affiliate where he became the anchor of two shows. He served at WBRC as the morning news anchor, daily noon news anchor, editorial director, and religion editor.
He continued to have an extremely successful career with WBRC and eventually helped with the launch of Good Day Alabama and served as an anchor there. After decades in the industry, Bolen asked to take a step back in 2001 to spend more time with his family. In 2010, he fully retired after a well rounded and respected career.
Throughout his career, Bolen received several awards and honors including the Gold Circle Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He also received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Alabama Cooperative Extension System.
A cancer survivor, a news anchor, a talented face and voice in the entertainment and news industry, Bolen deserved his "Life Inspiration Award" he received in 1997.
Sadly, Bolen has passed away at the age of 89 on January 4. At this time, details of his death have not been given, though Birmingham station noted that it was a tremendous loss to many.
Please pray for Bolen's family during this time. Though he was older in age, the loss of a loved one is difficult for anyone to walk through. In other recent news, an award-winning country legend suffered injuries after a car crash rollover.