Former TV anchor entertains Kiwanis with tales of yore

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 23, 2003

Bob Howell didn't have to wrestle with Greenville Kiwanis members to get a laugh on Tuesday afternoon.

The former television news personality and longtime general manager of Montgomery's WSFAnChannel 12 shared a few jokes and some of his comedic experiences while working in the media during the civic club's weekly meeting.

Howell began his broadcasting career in 1970 as sports director for WPBY in Dothan. His duties included serving as ring announcer for live studio wrestling and later as blownbynblow announcer. In 1976, he began working for WSFA where he gained recognition throughout the south.

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Howell currently serves as Vice President and Marketing Director for Colonial Bank Group, which is the parent company that oversees 273 Colonial Bank locations scattered across the southeast.

&uot;I can tell you right now that I know a heck of lot more about television than I know about banking,&uot; Howell said.

Howell shared stories varying from a man pulling a gun on him during a wrestling match to how WSFA was able to break the story about Gov. George Wallace an his wife Cornelia getting a divorce.

Howell said the irate wrestling fan was upset after being roughed up after jumping into the ring during a match. After Howell pushed the overallnwearing man around with an umbrella, the police detained him.

A secret source provided WSFA with the tip of Gov. Wallace's divorce. After being contacted by the news' chief investigative reporter, Howell was handed a divorce petition supplied to the station by the source. The reporter told him that the petition was left underneath the bell peppers at a local grocery store near the station. The petition later proved to be legitimate and a short time later Wallace's wife moved out of the Governor's mansion.

Howell also received some chuckles from the crowd after telling a story about him falling off the news set after the taps he had on his shoes caught the edge of the stairs.

The Greenville Kiwanis Club meets every Tuesday at noon at the Y.M.C.A.