WGRZ-TV’s Ed Kilgore said good-bye Wednesday night on the 6pm newscast, a full month earlier than previously announced. Ed Kilgore’s serving as MC for the ground breaking ceremony Saturday for the new Sabres development project was the catalyst for Ch 2 management to yank Ed off the air before his announced May 24th date.

Regardless of how and when Ed Kilgore wrapped up his 40 year career at Ch 2 the point is Ed’s retirement from local television marks the end of the era when it was Rick, Van and Ed on local sportscasts. Ed Kilgore was the “kid” among that group and it’s hard to believe he’s been on the air at Ch 2 for 40 years.

Ed was a competitor of mine when I worked at Ch 7. However, when I was at the Empire Sports Network he was one of the team. Ed hosted “Pros & Cons” along with Larry Felser and Art Wander for three years and it was a good ride.

Ed has been a witness to great moments in Buffalo sports history going back to OJ Simpson, Sabres/Flyers Cup Finals, Buffalo Braves, the arrival of Jim Kelly, four Super Bowls and another Cup finals.

Ed will also be known for those of us over 50 as the host of “Bowling for Dollars”. That local game show was a popular contest of viewers getting an opportunity to throw two bowling balls and winning prizes according to the pin fall. Not exactly the way to earn credibility for a young sportscaster, but it put Ed on the map and I for one enjoyed the program.

Ed Kilgore survived for 40 years while every other news and weather anchors who shared the desk went their way. Ed hung in there when his station was number three and went out with them sitting at number one in the local news ratings. Yes, quite a ride.

Now Ed Kilgore says he will be working for the Pegulas. Nothing formal has been announced, but based on Ed serving as the host of Saturday’s news conference I would guess his high public profile will be capitalized upon.

All the best to Ed Kilgore, a testimonial to longevity in a business known for brief encounters.

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