Lowell’s Legacy: 9&10 News Chief Engineer Retires After 58 Years
For nearly six decades one man has been a constant presence at 9&10 News, but today we say goodbye.
“I started in 1960, August of 1960.”
This is a story about a guardian, a sentinel of sorts, and a friend who’s always there for you.
He’s partly responsible for putting all these people, since 1960, on the air.
Lowell Shore started six years after the WWTV tower was built in 1954 as a junior engineer.
“Engineers did a lot more than they do now. Lots of tubes, we were always checking tubes in our spare time to keep things up and it was a long time before we had anything in here that had transistors, years. I went from that to chips and servers,” explained Lowell, chief engineer at 9&10 News for 58 years.
Just over a year into his job, there was a fire.
“The original building caught fire and burned more than you think a cement building would burn, and we were left here with a TV station with not a lot to work with. RCA sent a moving van with everything we needed and we were back on the air in two weeks. That was quite a feat,” remembered Lowell.
“Quite a feat” is a good way to describe Lowell’s career.
9&10 broadcasts on two stations. Channel 9 is south of Cadillac, and channel 10 is in Goetzville in the Upper Peninsula.
A three hour drive makes it difficult if something breaks.
“Trying to keep it all functioning without having breakdowns, and when something breaks down it has to be fixed right now. If something happens at channel 10 we have to jump right on it and fix it,” said Lowell.
Sometimes that would mean climbing the tower, a tower that’s nearly a quarter mile tall.
“Channel 9 is 1,204 feet and you either have fear or you don’t. At 40 feet, if you would fall off, you’re dead. At 40 feet up, it doesn’t get any worse,” said Lowell.
Through the tower Lowell has taken care of for 58 years, hundreds of familiar faces are sent to your home, breaking news, stories about the great people of Northern Michigan and weather forecasts.
“I enjoyed working here and there was never any reason to leave. I was doing work that I enjoyed,” explained Lowell.
When we moved into our new home in 2017, the decision was made to tear everything but the transmitter rooms and antenna down at the old place.
Lowell is the only one left working there.
He’s been responsible for more than 30 million minutes of broadcasting television, and now our beloved chief engineer Lowell Shore is calling it a day.
“Fifty eight years all together, which is a long career, and the company has always been good to work for. I woke up in the morning and I was eager to get to work, but it’s time for retirement now, other plans,” said Lowell.
From all of Northern Michigan and all of us at 9&10 News, thank you Lowell Shore for 58 years of keeping us on the air.
We will miss you, but we won’t say goodbye. It feels more appropriate to just say stay tuned.