Long time TV reporter and anchor Kathi Goertzen has died, KOMO TV reports. Goertzen battled benign brain tumors for more than a decade.
Goertzen was a familiar face to TV news viewers in Western Washington. The Seattle native was on the air more than 30 years.
She went to work for KOMO TV right after graduating from Washington State University in 1980. Within two years she was anchoring the weekend news. The rest was history.
Goertzen put her celebrity to work for good causes, but in 1998 she was diagnosed with a non-cancerous tumor that damaged the nerves controlling her speech and swallowing.
She had surgery and returned to work within a month, but the tumor re-grew in 2005. A series of surgeries left her unable to anchor.
"It's been a rough road, as you know. I was diagnosed with this a typical meningioma more than 10 years ago and I've had several surgeries and radiation an tried lots of different drugs and I've lose cranial nerve that controls my face and my hearing and my voice and my balance,” she said
She couldn't work on camera, but Goertzen continued to work off-camera, behind the scenes at komo. She was philosophical about her disease.
"There's only one way to take life now and that's one day at a time, and it's funny when you stop planning and planning and try to decided what you're going to do next, how each day becomes more beautiful,” she said.
The best TV news anchors deliver the news like a friend –intelligently, honestly, and most of all with trust. Kathi Goertzen was one of those anchors and we are all going to miss her.
She is survived by her husband, Rick Jewett, and her two daughters, Alexa and Aandrea.