For generations of local news viewers in Los Angeles, Jerry Dunphy was the familiar and authoritative newsman who began each newscast with a warm smile and his trademark greeting, "From the desert to the sea to all of Southern California."
Dunphy, one of the main anchors at KCAL Channel 9, was a dedicated newsman secure in his standing as the elder statesman of local TV news.
He has been remembered as one of the key forces behind some of Los Angeles' most innovative TV news formats. During the 1960s and for half of the 1970s, he was the primary anchor for KNXT's "The Big News," one of the first local newscasts in the country to run for an hour each night. In 1975, he moved to KABC-TV Channel 7, where he was an anchor for "Eyewitness News," which combined titillating stories with friendly banter. He also did two stints at KCAL, separated by a three-year term beginning in 1994 at KCBS Channel 2 (the former KNXT).
Dunphy also helped inspire characters such as the blustery Ted Baxter on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show" and Kent Brockman, the news anchor on "The Simpsons."