×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Gabe Pressman, TV Reporter Who Covered New York for 60 Years, Dies at 93

Gabe Pressman, a New York TV news icon whose career spanned the evolution of the medium, died Friday in the city he covered for more than 60 years. He was 93.

Pressman spent nearly half a century at NBC’s flagship New York station, WNBC-TV. He began his TV career anchoring a five-minute daily news report for what was then WRCA-TV in 1956. He continue to cover events for WNBC until his final months. His last on-air report for the station was coverage of this year’s St. Patrick’s Day parade, but he remained a presence in the newsroom and posted reports on WNBC’s social media platforms as recently as this week. He delivered a speech at the New York Press Club’s annual awards dinner earlier this month.

“This is an incredibly sad day for the WNBC family. Gabe Pressman was a television icon who served our viewers for more than 50 years,” said Eric Lerner, WNBC president and general manager. “He was truly one of a kind and represented the very best in television news reporting. Gabe was still coming to work and thinking about the next story. He was a treasured colleague and friend to all of us and he will be missed.”

Pressman was known as New York’s first TV reporter, an intrepid force who was among the early reporters to bring his own camera crew out of the studio to offer live on the scene reports on everything from fires to murders to natural and man-made disasters. He interviewed generations of New York leaders as well as national and international figures ranging from Fidel Castro to Golda Meir. He covered seminal events in the life of his native city ranging from the arrival of the Beatles in 1964 to the great power blackouts of 1965 and 1977 to the devastation of 9/11.

Tributes to Pressman poured in on Friday.

“Gabe’s contributions to the field of journalism extended far beyond what his viewers saw on television. It was his hard work behind the scenes that kept the cameras rolling when some would have preferred they be turn off; he kept public meetings open, when some would have preferred they be closed,” said New York Press Club president Steve Scott. “When he delivered his annual Freedom of the Press message at the Press Club’s Journalism Awards dinner on June 5, he was crystal clear: The First Amendment is under attack, and we can’t let our guard down. We can’t give up. We have to keep fighting for our rights as journalists.”

Born in the Bronx, Pressman attended NYU and graduated from Columbia School of Journalism in 1947. He worked as a reporter for the Newark Evening News and he toured Europe for 15 months on a Pulitzer Scholarship to file reports for Overseas News Agency.

In 1949, he joined the staff of New York World Telegram and Sun as a City Hall reporter. His ubiquitous presence in the city made him a natural choice to join WRCA’s radio news team in 1954. Two years later he was tapped for the daily news report for WRCA-TV, the predecessor of WNBC. The program expanded to a full half-hour report in 1963.

Pressman left WNBC for rival WNEW-TV (now Fox O&O WNYW) in 1972 but returned to WNBC in 1980.

Survivors include his wife, four children and eight grandchildren.

A host of notable figures took to social media to remember Pressman.

More TV

  • Writers vs Agents Packaging War WGA

    Rothman Brecher Ehrich Livingston Signs Writers Guild Code

    The Rothman Brecher Ehrich Livingston agency has signed the Writers Guild of America’s Code of Conduct, allowing the agency to return to representing WGA members again. The WGA made the announcement Monday night. RBEL is joining more than 70 agencies allowed to represent WGA members thanks to agreeing to a ban of agency packaging fees [...]

  • Fiona Lang and Ryan Shiotani

    BBC Studios Hires GMs in Further Asia Reshuffle

    BBC Studios the coproduction and rights sales arm of the British Broadcasting Corporation, has appointed Fiona Lang and Ryan Shiotani as general managers in the Asia-Pacific region. Lang, currently COO for the company in Australia and New Zealand, is promoted to become BBC Studios’ GM in the same geography. Her responsibilities cover marketing, advertising, creative, [...]

  • The Lord of the Rings: The

    'Lord of the Rings' Series Renewed by Amazon for Season 2

    Amazon has given an early Season 2 renewal to its forthcoming “Lord of the Rings” series. Pre-production on the project’s first season, which is set to film in New Zealand, is currently underway — although sources tell Variety that the full cast has not yet been set. Several actors, including Markella Kavenagh, Will Poulter, and [...]

  • Editorial use only. No book cover

    'Chinatown' Prequel Series in Development at Netflix From David Fincher, Robert Towne

    A prequel series to the classic film “Chinatown” is in early development at Netflix, Variety has confirmed with sources. David Fincher and Robert Towne, the film’s writer, are attached to pen the script. It will reportedly focus on the exploits of a young Jake “J.J.” Gittes during his early days as a private investigator. Netflix declined [...]

  • TV Roundup: Pop TV Releases Teaser

    TV News Roundup: Pop TV Releases Teaser for 'Schitt's Creek's' Final Season

    In today’s TV news roundup, Pop TV releases a teaser for the final season of “Schitt’s Creek,” and Nickelodeon kicks off the holiday season with “Top Elf.” DATES Nickelodeon’s “Top Elf” series will premiere Nov. 29. “Top Elf” is a new competition series featuring guest judges Frankie Grande, Amirah Kassem, Peyton List, Alex Wassabi and [...]

  • Karen Cogan’s 'Fled' Tops The Brit

    Karen Cogan’s 'Fled' Tops The Brit List, a League Table of Unproduced British TV Scripts

    Karen Cogan’s “Fled” has come top of The Brit List, a league table of unproduced scripts from British writing talent, this year devoted to television projects. The list, similar to The Black List in the U.S., was compiled from recommendations by British production companies, talent agencies, financiers and broadcasters. Cogan, represented by Independent Talent Group, [...]

  • Viacom HQ LA

    ViacomCBS Sets HR and Inclusion Chiefs

    ViacomCBS has named corporate heads of HR and inclusion as the companies prepare for the merger that is set to close early next month. The soon-to-combine Viacom and CBS have tapped Nielsen alum Nancy Phillips to serve as exec VP and chief people officer. Viacom alum Marva Smalls will serve as global head of inclusion, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content