Bob Johnson, who holds the record for Chattanooga's longest running TV news anchor, announced his retirement from WTVC, Channel 9.
Mr. Johnson left the station several months ago for treatment of Parkinson's Disease, but held out the hope he might return.
He has been a familiar face on local TV since 1975.
Tom Henderson, Channel 9 news director, said, "Bob's impact on television in the Tennessee Valley has been profound. He always treated the news seriously and viewers showed their appreciation by making him the most successful anchor in town."
WTVC general manager Mike Costa said, "Bob was the Peter Jennings, the Walter Cronkite of Chattanooga television news. He is an icon in this market. His professionalism made us all better. His fine work made NewsChannel 9 number one and his continuing influence on this generation of broadcast news professionals has kept us number one."
For many years, he had a feature "Wednesday's Child" that sought to place children with Big Brothers and Big Sisters.
A graduate of the University of Georgia, he started his career in 1962 at WFOM in his hometown of Marietta, Ga. His first TV job came in Atlanta in 1969. He was briefly in Charleston, S.C., before joining Channel 9.
NewsChannel 9 will provide special coverage of Bob Johnson's retirement in its newscasts Friday, beginning with NewsChannel 9 at Midday and continuing through "This and That" and into NewsChannel 9 at 5, 5:30 and 6.
Coverage will include highlights from his career, reaction from local newsmakers and bloopers excerpted from newscasts over the years, station officials said.