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Terry Pochert 

American Forces Thailand Network with American Forces Radio and Television Network

AM/FM/TV Engineering, News editing supervisor.

Before joining WXYZ in 1972, Terry worked with the American Forces Radio and Television Network (American Forces Thailand Network).

News:

Sightings:



Vince Wade Remembers and Comments on the Legacy of Bill Bonds

 Bill Bonds - Photo by Terry Pochert
Bill Bonds -
Photo by Terry Pochert

Vince Wade, a long-time investigated reporter with WXYZ-TV and friend of Bill Bonds, writes a very heart-felt commentary on Bill Bonds.  Thousands of comments have been posted about Bill, but not hit home as hard as Vince's message.  Vince Wade writes...

I had the unique and memorable experience of working with Bill Bonds for many years. In the 70s at the height of Bill’s ratings success a Channel 7 news producer made a savvy observation; if you buy his act, the producer said, Bill is the best in the business at what he does. Indeed he was. Detroit bought Bill’s act for a long time. My theory is thousands of Detroit factory rats, as many auto workers described themselves, identified with Bill’s on-air antics. They knew if they had a bully pulpit like Bill that they, too, would wear expensive but often garish clothes, that they, too, would spout off about the news just as they heard Bill doing. In his ad-libbed comments Bonds was doing what they did so many nights at some watering hole where they were having an end-of-shift shot and a shell (liquor with a beer chaser) while watching the news on the TV screen above the bar. Bill was one of them.

Bombastic Billy was smart and well-read. He knew what he was talking about. One night in the 70s during a national political convention ABC News decided to cut away for local news an hour early. Channel 7's late-news producer didn't get the message. Suddenly, with three minutes' warning, ABC anchor Howard K. Smith said they would be cutting away for local news. The Channel 7 newsroom was in total panic. The anchors raced to the studio. The newscast elements were not ready. As Bill put his mic on he said, "I have no scripts. I have no rundown (of the sequence of stories)." The floor director signaled he was now live. Bill said good evening and ad-libbed for two or three minutes while the staff scrambled to get scripts to the anchors and film clips in the projectors. At home, the audience probably thought Bill was ad-libbing just a little more than usual. Bonds was so keen on the business of news that he could tell the audience the news without a script. Very few news anchors then or now could do what Bill did that night.

Bill fought the demons of alcoholism his entire life. He lived his own private hell over the death of his daughter in a collision with a drunk driver. One time we shared a camera crew in Europe for separate assignments and late at night I would hear Bill in the next room loudly chastising himself over his daughter’s death while he paced the room in drunken agony.

There will be many stories told this week about Bill Bonds. But none of them will capture his uniqueness as a communicator. None of the tales will capture his magnetism, his ability to reach through the camera and grab you by your lapels and say, ‘Listen to me. This is news you need to know.’ - Vince Wade

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1988 Democratic Convention - Atlanta Georgia

1988 Democratic Convention, Atlanta, George, Jim Herrington, Bill Bonds, Mike Kalush
Bill Bonds, Jim Herrington, Mike Kalush - Photo by Terry Pochert
WXYZ media folks and fellow journalist covering the 1988 Democratic Convention in Atlanta, Georgia.

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1988 Democratic National Convention - WXYZ Team - July 20, 1988

1988 Democratic Naitonal Convention - WXYZ-TV News Team
Greg Karrer, Walter Kraft, Bill Bonds, John Fuller and Mike Kalush - Enjoying a break from a hectic day. - Photo by Terry Pochert 
1988 Democratic National Convention - WXYZ Team - July 20, 1988

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1988 Democratic National Convention Editing Area

1988 Democratic National Convention - WXYZ Editing Area
1988 Democratic National Convention WXYZ Editing Area - July 20, 1988 - The now famous "Banana in the BVU incident". - Photo by Terry Pochert

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AFTN - Terry Pochert, engineering, filling in during emergencies.

Terry Pochert - AFTN, Korat, Thailand - Filling in during emergencies.
Terry Pochert, engineering, filling in during several emergencies. 
Fun, but probably better off not behind the microphone.

Terry Pochert - Korat Royal Thail Air Force Base
Terry Pochert - Korat Royal Thai Air Force Base - AFTN Local Station, 1967.

Terry Pochert - TV and FM Antennas at the Korat Royal Thai Air Force Base

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