Throwback Thursday: Our Station... From Noe to Now - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

Throwback Thursday: Our Station... From Noe to Now

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MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - Thursday, we throw it back to the 1940s when James Noe first put his name across the air waves.

Fred Roberts started working for KNOE AM in March of 1948.

"The Noe family had a 250 watt radio station," says Roberts.

"I was in on the ground floor and helped put in every screw and bolt and nut that was put in," says Roberts.

The grand opening of KNOE TV was on a hot September day in 1953.

"It was so hot that they had to put ice on the camera to cool them off," Roberts remembers.

"A lot of the television was live," says Ken Purcell, who worked behind the camera for years, "there was no video tape, people like Harry Arthur and Dave Woodman would come on the camera live."

"Well everyone tuned in to see Jack McCall and June Taylor to see them fight on the air, they usually had an argument or two," says Roberts.

"Happiness Exchange, It was a kids program usually on Saturday morning and they'd have an audience of kids and live entertainers," says Purcell.

"The biggest thing that I remember when I got here, was the Governor was still alive," says Larry Rhymes, Good Morning ArkLaMiss anchor. "There was no doubt who owned the KNOE because election return time, the Governor was usually on air with the staff, and his philosophy was the station be involved and be a station that broadcasts for the community."

"Every year the families of all the employees were invited and Mr. Noe would pass out silver dollars to all the children and like I said, we had about 40 or 50 of them when I retired," says Fred Roberts holding his baggy of coins in the air.

In the 1990s, the almost 2,000-foot tower in Riverton collapsed.

"When it started coming down, it just folded up," remembers Ken Purcell, "Several people were killed and injured."

Purcell was there as the tower was rebuilt. "My signature is in magic marker on the top part of the tower."

"I always remember going to some of the big explosions. Everyone else was driving as fast as they can away, I was always driving as fast as I could to get in to get the pictures, to get the story," says Purcell, "It made your heart pump, made the adrenaline flow, and it was exciting to get the story that you knew everyone would want to know the facts about that evening."

"Well I'm so lucky to have been a part of it, and it not only has been my job, but been where I received my degree in radio and TV broadcasting," says Larry Rhymes, "The things I've learned here over the years has been invaluable. I don't think I could go to any university anywhere in the world and learn what I've learned here at KNOE."
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