It’s been a month since the WABC-TV family lost Lisa Colagrossi. But the ones really dealing with the tragedy are her husband of 17 years, Todd Crawford, and her two boys.
Crawford, in an exclusive conversation with Tuned In, says he’s overwhelmed by the support from the broadcasting industry.
“It was very comforting and very touching,” Crawford says. “What we knew before all of this happened is how important that she was to us. But what we didn’t realize was how special she was to a lot of other people around the country.”
While Crawford is so appreciative of the condolences, he recognizes it can only provide temporary support.
“We’ll never replace someone like Lisa. We would need four people to replace one Lisa; that’s how much she meant to our family.”
Colagrossi died suddenly from a brain aneurysm after working on a story in Queens for the morning newscast on Channel 7. Crawford says the medical problem is genetic, but Colagrossi had no symptoms and there was no a family history.
Friends and co-workers are in mourning after the stunning death of Lisa Colagrossi. The veteran Channel 7 reporter died from a brain hemorrhage after covering a story Thursday morning. She was 49.
Longtime WABC-TV anchor Bill Ritter says what most close to Colagrossi are feeling.
“We are all crushed, devastated,” Ritter tells Tuned In. “Lisa was the ultimate pro, and set the bar for how to work hard and effectively as both an immersed reporter and an immersed mom and spouse. I’m filled with sorrow, but also with joy for having known her.”
A familiar face since joining WABC in 2001, at home Colagrossi was hockey mom to her two sons.
In a statement, Dave Davis, President and GM at WABC, says, “All of us in the Channel 7 family are in shock over her sudden death, Our attention is now focused on helping her husband and two children through this difficult time.”
After finishing her morning shift covering a Queens house fire, Colagrossi collapsed in the news van and was rushed to the hospital. Unable to regain consciousness, she died Friday morning.
Despite being shut out of this year’s citywide debates by the Campaign Finance Board, WABC-TV has taken matters into its own hands.
Channel 7 will host the first debate in the Democratic battle for New York City Comptroller. Anchor Bill Ritter leads the debate against Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and former governor Eliot Spitzer. The debate, at the WABC studios, will stream live Friday, August 9 at 10 a.m. It will air on WABC, Sunday, August 11 at 11 a.m.
As part of the debate doubleheader, Channel 7 gathers the Republican candidates for New York City mayor August 11 at noon.
“WABC-TV and Eyewitness News are proud to continue our tradition of providing viewers with the most comprehensive information necessary to make a thoughtful and confident decision when they enter the voting booth,” said Dave Davis, president and general manager of WABC-TV.
WABC already broadcast a Democratic primary debate in New Jersey’s U.S. Senate race last weekend.
Channel 7 is a co-sponsor of the debates along with Noticias 41 Univision, the Daily News, and the League of Women Voters of the City of New York.