Thank You Larry Gebert
Larry Gebert Remembered
Larry Gebert passed away surrounded by his family after suffering from heart attack complications. Larry's job was to give us the weather every morning, but as you know, Larry Gebert was so much more to all of us in Idaho.
Larry set the standard for charitable giving by broadcasting from so many philanthropic groups every morning. Larry was his own scheduler, producer, talent, and booker. Sometimes he drove the truck, ran the wires, and anything else before going live on the air. Larry and his camerawoman Theresa were a fixture on tour.
He loved broadcasting from the Balloon Classic. For years, he was the eyes and ears for the pilots breaking down the weather conditions before they took flight. It was always a pleasure to watch Larry interview Balloon Classic Founder Scott Spencer. Scott died recently; I hope they're both in Heaven, each trying to get the last word.
It's impossible to write an article that does justice to who Larry was in the Treasure Valley. He loved going on cruises with his beautiful wife Julie, camping with their kids, and water skiing. Larry never missed a weekend to water ski. Winter, frigid temperatures? It didn't matter; Larry was also on the water. He used his passion for water skiing to partner with Make A Wish Idaho to create a fundraiser called 'The Great Polar Bear Plunge.'
Larry Gebert always delivered, whether it was the Western Idaho State Fair or the Snake River Stampede. Idaho Mike shared his experience meeting Larry at the fair. "He was so great with the kids," said Idaho Mike. "He asked them age-appropriate questions that they enjoyed. I marveled at his humility."
This morning, Dave Petso shared a moment about working with Larry behind the scenes. "You know, those folks work some really long hours. So I'm getting ready to go on, and Larry is asleep in his chair. However, as soon as it was time for the weather, he was up and awake." He never missed a minute of being on and ready to go.
Being a performer is a calling; it may look easy, but the ability to perform on live television is a gift. Television newsrooms are a very close group. The best newsrooms are like families. The chemistry between Larry Gebert, Doug Petcash, and Maggie O'Mara woke up the Treasure Valley for years. The KTVB Morning Show has been the top-rated morning show in our area for years.
One of its continued successes is that all three work to make the product the star. Viewers related to all three of them in good times and bad; Larry and his family always ensured that new reporters to KTVB had a place to eat during the holidays. They would open up their home inviting new folks, some fresh out of college, and sharing the warmth of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter. Those reporters were never alone, thanks to Larry's generosity. And we were never alone or without a laugh. Thank You, Larry!