CINCINNATI – Clyde Gray paused a moment when asked why he decided now was the time to retire from television broadcasting.
After 37 years of reporting other people's tragedies, Gray said, he yearned to do something new, refreshing and renewing.
"I have to report on children who are abused or raised in abusive circumstances," he said. "It's hard for me to talk about those stories, knowing that I have an 8-year-old daughter at home. And sometimes I see her face when I'm talking about all these other kids. And it just tears me to pieces."
That's when the 59-year-old anchorman – admired by viewers and colleagues alike for his calm under pressure, smooth delivery and unwavering professionalism – began to cry. Still, Gray wasn't embarrassed or ashamed.
"I'm comfortable in my own skin," he said.
Thank goodness. If Clyde Gray weren't, what hope would there be for the rest of us?
For more than 23 years, Gray has been a main anchor at 9 On Your Side. Most recently, he has co-anchored the 5 p.m. news with Tanya O'Rourke and co-anchored with Carol Williams at 6 p.m. and 11 p.m.
"He's like the Walter Cronkite of Cincinnati," Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley said of Gray. "You felt like when he said something, it was news."
Tune in tonight beginning at 5 p.m. for Clyde's last day as an anchor, with some surprises along the way.
WCPO Insiders can read about the stories that touched Gray the most, why he decided to forego a network broadcast job and what's next for one of the city's most-admired anchors.