WDEF-TV Celebrates 60 Years On-the-Air in Chattanooga

CHATTANOOGA, TN (WDEF) – Happy 60th Birthday to Chattanooga’s very first television station.

WDEF-TV signed on April 25th, 1954.

Luther Masingill has, of course, been there from the beginning.

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Luther adds, "What did I do? I found 7 million lost dogs and cats. That’s all I did."

Another employee that anchors this ship, Doris Ellis.

She started at WDEF-TV when she was just 19 years old.

And on this nostalgic day, she remembers standing next to her mother in that pill box hat, waiting to get into the WDEF studio for a tour.

That’s when the station moved from the Volunteer Building to South Broad Street.

Ellis adds, "I would never have thought I’d be working here for 47 years."

Yes, times have changed.

Luther says, "It would take a truck load of equipment to do a broadcast somewhere out in the boondocks. Now, you can do it with one of these cell phones."

But where will we be 60 years from now?

We asked General Manager, Phil Cox.

Cox says, "That’s a great question. I wish I had the answer. I didn’t have the answer a year ago, and things have happened with the digital explosion.  So, I see that to continue with the technological advances."

But for now we leave you with something that’s definitely not as sweet as a big birthday cake, our employees singing, "Happy Birthday."

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