Former Anchor in Memphis Found Dead in his Home & the Memphis TV Market Gets Smaller!

I first saw this headline in NewsBlues and called my good friend DJ who actually ponies up the money for a subscription. My first thoughts were racing as to who this could be and I think I was even more stunned to learn that it was former WPTY anchor Wendall Stacy who actually lives just about four or five blocks from stately LarkSmith Manor in Midtown. There aren’t many details and what little I could find are on the website of WPTY where WS used to work. I have to admit I didn’t really know Wendall. I know he was originally brought over from Arkansas and was anchoring the weekdays before he and Bill Lunn (now at WMC) who was working weekends swapped shifts. I learned where WS lived by accident. A friend of mine who lived in Oklahoma City was coming to town with a couple of his buddies to attend a concert and he said they were going to be staying at a place in Midtown. He told me to swing by to say hello and when I did, Wendall Stacy answered the door. We chatted just briefly before he went on about his business of playing host. I’m not sure what Wendall was doing since he left WPTY and I’m not sure of what led to his death. I just know I hate to hear it.

And it appears that when the News Directors and GMs in Memphis tell you the audience is getting smaller, it IS getting smaller.  According to DJ and NewsBlues the latest Nielsen numbers shows  that the Memphis DMA has fallen from 44 to 47 with New York being number 1 and Podunk, USA being 250 or whatever.   That’s bad news for Memphis but the good  news is that the Boise, Idaho is growing!  It is indeed an ill wind that fails to blow up some good!

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2 Comments on “Former Anchor in Memphis Found Dead in his Home & the Memphis TV Market Gets Smaller!”

  1. AMNewsboy Says:

    Not sure if this fills in the pieces (or makes the puzzle even more blurry), but Stacy did a one-off column for the Flyer a couple of years or so after his departure from ‘PTY…. another blog referenced a Flyer story, saying he was fired back in ’00; the whys are conflicting. ‘PTY is listing a cause of death as prolonged illness.

    Never met the man, but I always thought he was pretty damned good at what he did.

  2. DMA Reporter Says:

    On the subject of the shrinking DMA, years ago Gibson County was owned by Memphis but Memphis started visiting the DMA less and less until WBBJ had more viewers in Gibson County than all 4 Memphis stations combined. Now it seems Memphis stations won’t leave the city limits for the DMA unless it is a national story. Here is an idea, since almost all of the stations have sat trucks… USE THEM! Turn one DMA story a day someware in the news cast. Heck, you can even target the counties you reciently lost. That is the way to get Memphis back to market 40 and keep it from sliding to 50.

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