Thursday, October 19, 2006

Dear Dave;

The letter below was sent to me by Jerry Colet who used to be a PC AD in the old rooms and then became a VT tech. He sent it last year and I have done some editing to it so it works for the retirees site. I thought it might be interesting to the group. I think the site keeps getting better and better. The pictures and stories are a real treasure. I will write another letter to try to get people to talk about specific situations that came up at work. Hope this finds you and your family in good health. All is well here.


As I said in my letter to the East Newsletter, I wondered if anyone really remembered me. It has been 30 years (almost impossible to imagine). I thought I had finally arrived when I got to assist Danny Stevens on the Sullivan Show and then the show only lasted for a year before it was cancelled. Even the move to Los Angeles was a bit late for all the big ones. Danny Kaye, Jack Benny, The Smothers Brothers, Judy Garland; all were gone by the time I got out here. Sonny and Cher had broken up but there was the Cher Show, Tony Orlando and Dawn, and Dinah Shore. Carol Burnett was going strong, but with a regular established crew. Of course there were the soap operas and a few game shows. I did get to work on the Mike Douglas Show and the John Davidson Show (both were for syndication). Anyway, life out here is worth the whole thing anyway. I shall never miss New York and only regret that I did not get to California earlier. I came from the northeast; Detroit and New York, so California weather was a most pleasant surprise. I shall always remember visiting the house I bought in North Hollywood on Christmas Eve and found the previous owners outside watering the lawn. I lived there for 15 years and by some fantastic stroke of luck moved south to Northern San Diego County when I retired. I still regard the climate here to be the best in the country. No. we don't have earthquakes here and although fire threatened about 7 years ago, it is no longer a problem due to development of the land.I really do miss a lot of the people I used to know in New York. Many were the film editors because I spent many years in the WCBS-TV film operation. So many have passed away and others seem to have settled in Florida. Well, I guess the same applies to the technicians and management people. It's good to know that there are still a few around. I remember Beverly Morgan when she was a Flexotypist for the Translators in Hal Meiers' Net Operations office. I guess that for many years she had been a right hand assistant to Don Hewitt. Good for her, a capable lady. A tragedy to have lost Barry Kahn, so young. My friend and one-time supervisor, Pat Franklin, died out here in California after he left CBS. Did you know Raili Syreeni in VT? A pretty little lady from Finland. She moved here a short time before I transferred. She was here in tape and subsequently married one of the tape supervisors. She died suddenly about 7 years ago and her husband, who was a close friend, passed away a year ago. Before her death, Raili had left CBS and became an successful attorney forCalTrans. A very bright lady.You mentioned Joel Aronowitz. Yes I spoke with him a year or so ago. I never knew anyone who didn't regard him as the most decent guy and a joy to work with. I was envious of one of Joel's daughters, She is, I understand, a commercial airline pilot. I learned to fly privately, when I was in the army and would love to have pursued that skill occupation more seriously, but I couldn't shake my major interest in broadcasting, which started seriously in 1944 and I really wanted to become a radio actor. So where would I be now?Yes, I remember the CBS Studios scattered all over the city. I was there on the first night that Channel 2 aired their first color movie. It was "Destination Moon". We had a 35mm print and the company had to open Studio 72 up on Broadway (The Color Studio) to air it. It was a huge operation now it seems like nothing at all.Congratulations on your 38 years. You have me beaten by two years already and I spent two of my 36 years in the army (but, at least, producing, writing and directing TV for the Signal Corps at the Army Ballistic Missile Agency in Huntsville, Alabama and at Cape Canaveral).As you must know, there are major change occurring out in Los Angeles too. CBS has merged with another local station and their old radio and KNXT building is being given up. The old Film Facility (Studio Center) in Studio City will become the major production facility and is growing by leaps and bounds. A young man has just been promoted to take over the whole West Coast facility and production management (Michael Klausman). When I first came out here in 1975, Mike had just left his job as VT Librarian and moved into Scheduling. A remarkable young guy and he's doing a great job now. So things can and do happen.Please remember me to the old veterans and let them know that retirement can be nice too. I sincerely hope that everyone has taken advantage of the benefits that the company always offered to the old timers. Really! They have been extremely generous.Again, my best to you and your wife and thanks for making my day.

Jerry Colet