Sunday, October 07, 2012

New THV Anchor Killed in Vehicle Accident

KTHV Today's THV is heartbroken to announce we have lost one of our own. Matt Turner died in a crash on I-30 Saturday night. State police say his vehicle ran off the interstate and hit a highway sign. 

 Matt joined Today's THV in September, coming to us from television station KNWA in northwest Arkansas, where he spent nine years on the anchor desk. But he's been part of this state his whole life.

 Born and reared in Arkadelphia, Matt played baseball and football for Arkadelphia High School. Being a two-year starter for the Arkadelphia Badgers led him to quarterback for Southern Mississippi, then after one year in Hattiesburg he transferred to his hometown to play starting quarterback for Ouachita Baptist University where he met his wife, Julee. They have a daughter, Preslee Bell, who is 10 months old. 

When Matt joined Today's THV, he said, "My wife and I are coming home and now I'm a part of a television station that I grew up watching. My mom and family will see me covering the Little Rock area and that will be one of the greatest joys of my life. I'm more motivated than ever to serve my fellow Arkansans by providing informative, entertaining and quality news! I'm dedicated to making a positive difference at Today's THV and I can't wait to get started." In his journalism career in Arkansas Matt earned several honors, including the NWA Business Journal's 40 under 40 list. 


35 Comments:

At 9:00 PM, October 07, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sad, so sad.

 
At 9:47 PM, October 07, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I truly enjoyed watching Matt over the years. It is such a shock. Prayers going out to his Loving Family and multitude of Friends. THV Finally had someone who was going to pull them up by the bootstraps! Gonna miss you MATT!!!!! In loving thoughts and heartfelt Christian Prayers...

 
At 10:52 PM, October 07, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thinking about my good friends at THV tonight. You guys have a had a rough couple of years, and this is without a doubt the low point. I know it sucks now, but it's going to get better though. Best wishes to the good folks in that building. I love you guys.

 
At 11:02 PM, October 07, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow-- tough spot for the anchors-- especially Craig who he was replacing. Did a good job although it was uncomfortable. Not fun for viewers but what are you going to do.

A real mistake to not let the others anchors say anything. Lots of talk about the THV family and then the others anchors don't say a word? Even more uncomfortable.

 
At 1:21 AM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I figured the Full evening anchor tribute was pretaped. But I too felt very odd that neither of the others said ANYTHING. Was trying to remember if they did that on ch 7 when Anne P was murdered. Said. Praying for all

 
At 1:24 AM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I felt so sorry for Ed Buckner and Liz when they broke down. Matt was the first person whom I have felt gave Ed kind words and I felt it genuine. I too send thoughts and praying for MT family

 
At 5:00 AM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not that I'm trying to start something but at some point that statement about Ed has to be discussed. I thought zed said you all were a bunch of huggers. Not really?

As far as the news, I haven't been able to sleep since. While I appreciate and respect the feelings of those people, I feel as a friend of Matt's that this needs to be said and please forgive my redneck roots.

This was not about YOU people at channel eleven. I know you have to say something, but why didn't you try to make this about Matt? It was obvious yiu were trying to find deep feelings for a man you could not have had deep feelings for because you only knew him a few weeks.

That begs the question: Why not go to Arkadelphia and find the people who played football with him and knew him all his life?! From what I hear, every church in Clark county had words and tears for this man. Why weren't you there?!!

Was that his résumé tape where you got the historical video for him? Those were certainly the highlights of his professional career but there was so much more. The anchor people made it sound like he was tip-toeing around looking for approval when the truth is he was a leader, take charge, decisive man that, incidentally, it sounds like you all needed in that place.

Let me put it this way; if you go to a funeral, are the people who speak and pay tribute to a person the people he met six weeks ago, or the people who knew him all his life?

On a day when a young man dies tragically and horrifically, who wants to hear about the weatherman finally finding someone who will talk to him nicely and give him hugs. I mean, I've seen you people find out more about a murder victim in an afternoon than you did about one of your own! Who was in charge of this?

I'm sorry, I guess I was trying to start something after all after i read that Ed comment. I'm sorry you didn't get to know the man longer, but please try to find those who did! His legacy is more than cheesy sound bites.

 
At 8:30 AM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought the news tribute at a little after 10:30 Sunday was nice. It hard to talk about someone that is fairly new.

5:00 AM, Not sure what your back ground is but people deal with loss in many ways. It was obvious to that Liz, Ed, and Dawn were very emotional. When we talk about a loss we often try to relate our own memories. To some people that may look like the anchors are talking more about themselves than Matt. I think the anchors all did a good job.

I do think it would have been nice for the weekend anchors to also say something.


I think if this had been happened on a night when the only news cast for the evening was not delayed till after 10:30 it would have changed many things and may have been better.

There will be time to talk to Matt's family and friends. That did not have to happen on Sunday as news was spreading.

As a viewer I hate it when i see a TV crew show up and say "your friend _____ just died how you you feel". Give it some breathing room.

5:00 AM, Maybe you work in the business and like to stick mics in peoples faces so you can get raw emotion and get that "great" shot of someone crying when they just found out about a friend dying. I don't need that. There will be time to show friends/family later as they wish. It did not need to happen Sunday.

 
At 8:39 AM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:00am it is called RESPECT!

 
At 9:17 AM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems that many in the business and in society as a whole anymore know that word RESPECT!

 
At 12:37 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very sad. I, too, have not been able to put it out of my mind. I saw the Sun, 10:30 tribute as well as the what was said this morning. I thought it was fine and from the heart. Matt had been gone barely 24 hrs when they had to go on air. Perhaps they will do a more indepth/family/long-time friend piece on Wed. They did have Bo Mattingly by phone this a.m. as a spokesperson for the family. 5:00 a.m. - I am sorry for the loss of your friend.

 
At 12:38 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd show ya some respect!
5:00 am, your insensitivity is only matched by your lack of knowledge of what is really going on behind the scenes and your inability to see what’s called the whole picture. Your comments reflect only the scum that you pepper throughout this blog. You only are appearing to have some level of sensitive nature to you to respond to something you know you have no business commenting on…you are obviously one of the people who frequently posts here, torching everything that comes down the pike. Who in their right mind would second guess a group of folks dealing with grief and doing their best to honor a man who really deserved it? The segment you referred to was only a tiny piece of the presentation that touched very many people. It was all about Matt’s life and not a thing you say behind your scared little vale matters. You obviously realize that by the anchors breaking down, it affected many viewers…you are jealous of that and that it wasn’t your station that viewers are relating to or offering support for. Being a turd on this blog has absolutely no affect on actual viewership…or what mature people in the business know…you can only provide words and really not very smart ones. Your hatred for mankind reflects through your post and just because it’s a serious situation you’re commenting on, it only causes you a small hesitation to get back to what you do…bash TV stations other than the one you work for. So just wait for something else to be posted about THV and you can return to your chicken approach.

This market just has an immature handful of folks who have absolutely no understanding about what healthy competition is all about…5:00-it reflects that your life is one that cannot be repaired by hateful dialogue…cause you know the truth, if you revealed who you really are, you’d take a whoopin’ or two just like ya did when you were a kid.

 
At 12:52 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If ya really knew Matt, and you say you do, then you realize that the time he spent at that station was plenty of time to know him and grow to really like the guy...You are not his friend, you are a liar, anyone that knew him knew you only needed a little time with him to totally get it...what he loved and lived for...you are only commenting on this thread to be inciteful and you have it out for THV...you're no friend to Matt Turner or his memory. It's obvious you work for another station than THV, but instead of being in the great and honorable field of TV News, you should be asking folks - Paper or Plastic! Turner was a wonderful man who rose so far above guys like you who have never been hugged enough.

 
At 12:58 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

PS, not that I'm trying to start something...sure! 5:00 - the above comment was for you...not that I'm trying to start something...a liar always starts with what they want you to believe and they think they can hide behind a slew of poorly thought out sentences. Ya better be careful...Buckner is about 6'3" and if he hugged you, you might stop breathing!

 
At 1:23 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just stop a good man died to young!

 
At 3:33 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Angy 12:38. Believe me or not its your choice. I dont work at another station and im not a THV hater. i appreciate what was done by the anchors- I didn't criticize them but the poster and whatever group was deciding what to focus on. The part about Matt's life was-- I thought-- trivialized. Heck, Steve Sullivan told me more about Matt.

Then the comment about how Ed finally had soneone to listen to just went all over me. I really don't care what you think I should think or do and I don't think you should call people liars when you really don't know.

Also, before you go blaming your competition you should know that every one of your conpetitors paid tribute to Matt. Hats off.

By the way, you criticize me for posting behind a "vale" (sic) but its okay to post anonymously for your angry self?

 
At 4:00 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

3:33 you still lack RESPECT!

 
At 8:20 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

5:00 I think your comments were very insensitive. I'm sure you are sad but I think Matt's friends and colleagues did the best they could during a terrible situation. I could tell their feelings were heartfelt. 12:38 & 12:52 I feel like you had no right to assume 5:00 was someone from your competition. Nothing in his statement led me to believe that. I watched all of the station's tributes/stories and thought they were good. Bo Mattingly spoke eloquently about his lost friend on KARK and even Roger Sussanin at Channel 7 sounded very heartfelt but didn't act like he knew Matt personally. I met Matt several times over the years and he seemed like a very nice guy and true Arkansan. Lets try to honor his memory and not fight mundane issues. Grow up!

 
At 10:26 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dang, 12:38, I really think you need to take a Xanax and chill! 5:00 was expressing his/her opinion. It might've struck you as insensitive, but your reaction was off the chart! Look, we all recognize the tragic loss of a talented young man with a beautiful family and a wonderful life ahead of him.

But frankly, I have to admit...the thought crossed MY mind, too, that he'd only been at THV for a month. I'm sorry, it may be a horrible shock that he's gone, but really...is it possible to have established a deep emotional bond with someone you have only known 6 weeks? Like I say, it was a terrible shock and a tragedy, but 5:00 is not alone in wondering about that fact. Also, the news director has just been fired, the ratings are tanking...and now this horrible loss. Everyone over there has to be a bundle of nerves anyway.

 
At 10:26 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would like to thank THV for the beautiful tributes to Matt Turner. It's nice to hear how he touched the lives of people from the anchor desk to the newsroom floor. I can't help but wonder where was Mark Edwards in all of this? I saw his tribute to Matt online, but noticed that it was not as visible as the other past or present members of THV. What gives? I hope that the tributes given by Craig, Dawn and Liz have been sincere and not media hype. When you omit others for self, it's hard to think anything else. GOD BLESS MATT'S FAMILY DURING THE TIME OF THEIR LOSS.

 
At 10:51 PM, October 08, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am sure Mark was on his way back from Auburn during taping....? Prayers for the family and the staff... Past and present

 
At 6:43 AM, October 09, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A thumbs-up for the THV folks and their coverage with one small complaint.

Yesterday, one of the anchors was down in Arkadelphia and mentioned that as they passed the crash site, there was a dark cloud as they approached and as they passed, the sky cleared.

I personally think it's a private moment if you think God and/or Matt's spirit has timed the clouds just for you. Great if you have that kind of pull.

Otherwise, it just seems a bit much. Sorry to complain, but emotion can turn things unprofessional for everyone real quick.

 
At 8:25 AM, October 10, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I loved the way KTHV handled the Matt tributes. It was too soon to head to Arkadelphia to talk with folks in the first 24 hours. They talked with Matt's closest friend on the phone that next morning so you can't say they didn't reach out to the people who knew him the best. They even had a whole story one night from Matt's mother. They did the best with what they had. They approached it from several angles......job well done. I even heard them talk about the Channel 7 sports guy and his relationship with Matt. Matt would have been so proud and honored to hear EVERYONE'S words. Again...THV did a great job.

 
At 11:07 AM, October 18, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How did nobody an THV not know about Matt Turners disease until the funeral when KNWA knew about all along . Wouldnt that be something KNWA would of been responsible of passing along to THV to maybe help him with. I understand Matt not wanting to tell but his previous employer should of told THV after they hired him to maybe make his work environment easier and THV could worked with him to find a cure.

 
At 11:18 AM, October 18, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was surprised when KATV's Steve Sullivan wrote about the disease right after Matt's death. I think that was an invasion of privacy. Maybe Matt didn't want the info out there. It could affect how people saw him, his ability to get a job. I don't think that was the appropriate time to just drop that bombshell. Seemed a little self-serving on Sullivann's part. Also, I don't think KNWA was obligated to say one word to THV or any other employer about Matt's disease. That's a medical condition, and I would imagine you could be sued for disclosing an emoloyee's medical history.

 
At 2:16 PM, October 18, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If folks at THV didn't know about the illness, then they didn't know him very well. It wasn't that big of a secret. I thought Sully's work was really touching. He actually knew Matt better than anyone at THV.

 
At 9:56 AM, October 19, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

But the PUBLIC did not know about the illness until Sully's piece about Matt. So what if Sully knew Matt well. Don't know about you, but I wouldn't want my "friends" blabbing about my personal issues--let alone a medical condition--when I am no longer around to give permission. I think it was a lapse in judgment.

 
At 1:34 PM, October 19, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Easy Francis, easy. Just let it go, OK?

 
At 12:54 PM, October 20, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

11:18 you are a total moron. Sully is a close friend of the Turners who was asked by the family to speak at Matt's funeral, so obviously the family did not think his actions were wrong. He also did not mention a specific disease or say what was wrong with Matt...so I'm not sure why anyone would think negatively about Matt based on Sully's remarks. He probably mentioned that Matt was ill sometimes so that people would realize it was likely that this was not a DWI situation, to call Sully's comments self-serving is a disgrace. Sully offered a touching tribute to his friend and did not even link his illness to anything. Go crawl in a hole, and no I am not Sully or a friend of his.

 
At 1:41 PM, October 20, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Minor point before 12:54 starts calling me names... I don't have a problem with the medical thing by sully either, but is there ever a time he's not smiling? Smiling in the interviews right after he died while talking about Matt-- smiled during most of the eulogy. Again, no biggie.

 
At 2:39 PM, October 20, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am 11:18. You, 12:54, are probably Sully himself. And rather than crawl into a hole, I'm wondering what crawled up yours and died. I still say that the piece Sully wrote was neither the time nor the place to bring up a disease that most people were unaware of. And no one was talking about a DUI--that had never been mentioned. Matt could have been completely healthy and dozed off at the wheel. The funeral? Yes, if you have been asked to speak by the family and cleared to mention the disease, fine. That is a lot different than writing an editorial. And I never said it would cause people to "think negatively" about Matt. I said that he might not have wanted that info out there because it might affect how people saw him, or that the disease would be what took center stage. Also, it might cause someone to not hire him. That's common sense. You have your opinion, I have mine, Mr. "I'm not Sully or a friend of his."

 
At 3:28 PM, October 20, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that 11:18 is an idiot and I work at THV. How exactly could his post be "self-serving?" I highly doubt Sully would post on here (doesn't he do Henderson St. football games on Saturdays?)...but who knows? Also, how do you know that Sully didn't actually talk with the family before posting his blog? Everyone is entitled to their opinion though, and mine is that 11:18 is a creep who obviously posts here often.

 
At 4:59 PM, October 20, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone heard the results of the autopsy?

 
At 8:50 PM, October 21, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What Sully said was fine. He wasn't the only person who referenced his illness. Bo Mattingly did as well. I doubt it was a big secret to KTHV. I, too, have been curious about his autopsy results. Still just a really sad situation. :(

 
At 10:34 PM, October 24, 2012, Anonymous Anonymous said...

KARK off the air again a couple of days ago.

 

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