Saying goodbye to Chrys Peterson - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Saying goodbye to Chrys Peterson

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(Toledo News Now) -

She is the face of WTOL 11, the heart of our newsroom and part of the soul of the city of Toledo. You have welcomed Chrys Peterson into your homes for two decades, but now she is moving on to the next chapter of her life.

As Chrys looks forward to spending more time with her husband Tom and her beautiful daughter Riley, we at Toledo News Now took a look back at the last 20 years as a way to honor and thank our coworker and friend.

Chrys has been paid to report on the big issues facing Toledo and northwest Ohio, giving the public the information they need, when they need it. But her passion has always been getting involved in the community and making a difference.

She spends hundreds of hours of her own time participating in charity events and speaking to groups and organizations, but her greatest commitment in northwest Ohio may be her involvement with the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. Chrys has been involved with the event since its inception in Toledo, 20 years ago.

For 17 of the last 20 years, Chrys was a champion for hundreds of children who were looking for their forever homes. As an advocate for Lucas County Children's Services, Chrys was undoubtedly responsible, in part, for many adoptions. Lives were changed because Chrys reached out.

"We are so appreciative of everything you have done for the City of Toledo," said former Toledo Mayor Mike Bell. "You are the actual light of energy that makes this city such a great place to live."

And although Chrys' warmth and smile have brightened the lives of many, she is also a serious newsperson. When big stories break, Chrys has been the one Toledo turns to, providing an urgent but calm explanation. Chrys has excelled at covering news, and that's a fact that can't get lost in all her personality.

"Chrys Peterson is exactly the way you see her. What you see is what you get," said Jeff Heitz, Chrys' former co-anchor. "She's exactly what you see on the air: a warm, kind, funny human being, and she was just great to work with. She made my final years in broadcasting a pleasure, and for that, I'll always be grateful."

"As much as we appreciate Chrys for her personality and her philanthropy work, it's her legacy as a journalist that I believe is the most important," said Toledo Free Press Editor-in-Chief Michael Miller. "Chrys is a pioneer. She broke up the ‘old boys' club' as an anchor when she came to Toledo. Her true lasting legacy is the quality of journalism she's practiced and the work she's done for this market in the last 20 years."

Chrys gets attention for her work as an anchor, but she's just as gifted when she gets out from behind the anchor desk and shares her personal talents. Toledo has looked on proudly as Chrys sang on stage, acted and more.

"You are just a gem, a star," said Toledo Mayor D. Michael Collins to Chrys. "I know your future is as bright as everything you've brought to Toledo.  Thank you for being here.  Thank you for your commitment."

But in order for Chrys to be there for the community for the past 20 years, her own family has had to sacrifice their time with her. Since moving to Toledo for a job at the anchor desk in 1994, Chrys met and fell in love with baseball coach Tom Runnels. They made a home here and had a daughter who is turning out to be as bright and talented as her mother.

WTOL's loss is Tom and Riley's gain. Chrys will now be able to devote her time to what is most important – her family.

We don't know what Chrys will do next, but there is no doubt it will be something remarkable. And we wish her all the best.

Click here for Chrys' message to Toledo.

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Copyright 2014 Toledo News Now. All rights reserved.

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