Tuesday night, WEAU's 2000-foot high tower collapsed. According to the article WEAU 13 tower collapses in Fairchild , “The WEAU broadcast tower stood as the tallest man made structure east of the Mississippi for 45 years. Wednesday morning, a pile of twisted metal strewn around the base of the tower and covering County Road H, is all that remains.” Most of the comments posted on the WEAU web site said they would miss the tower. One commenter hoped his NBC DTV reception would improve when the new tower goes up. WEAU summarized the comments in WEAU tower brought more than just news to local community , noting “Many people living in the area say during the last few decades our tower has literally served as a beacon of light for them.“
WEAU Chief Engineer Ron Wiedermeier said, “I got a phone call just before I got to the transmitter site, they told me the county had called and the tower was lying on the ground. I parked on the side of the road for a few minutes, because it was gut wrenching. We had great pride in it because it could deliver over such a great distance because our signal goes, well, we've heard people pick us up in Bayfield, that's quite a haul."
I'm pleased to see the tradition of broadcasters helping each other when one station has problems is still alive. WEAU's web site reported WEAU 13 is on the air - on 18.3, 50.1 - and Charter Cable 6, stating, “Along with WQOW and Charter Cable, WEAU also would like to thank other local broadcasters, WXOW, WKBT and FOX 25-48 for their support.” The comments show WEAU has many over-the-air viewers. Many thanked channel 18 for carrying WEAU's programming.
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