KOAM anchor Rhonda Justice has announced her last day on KOAM's 5, 6, and 10 p.m. newscasts will be Friday, Dec. 7:
In an e-mail sent out earlier today, Ms. Justice said:
It is with tears of sorrow and joy that I share this bittersweet announcement with you. My last day on the desk at KOAM-TV will be Friday, December 7th, 2007.
Let me first say, I have thoroughly enjoyed the last three years here at KOAM. One couldn't ask for a better co-worker than Dowe Quick.
I will miss seeing my KOAM co-workers on a daily basis. They are a great group of people who care about what they do and how they affect the community they serve. The Four States are lucky!!
I knew at age three that television journalism was what I wanted to do. I enforced that decision in high school, went on to Oklahoma State and never looked back.
Since then, I have interviewed presidents, death row inmates and all walks of life in between. I feel blessed to have learned so much about life from the very people I've interviewed for my stories. Make no mistake, everyone has a story. It has been a thrill to share those stories with so many throughout the years.
I have seen the worst in people. Some stories were so bad that it was a difficult task just to choke back the tears to be able to move on to the next story. However, I've also seen the best in people. Those are the ones that stay with me. I feel good about the humanity people have shown to others and I was fortunate to have a front row seat to that humanity because of a camera and a microphone. I have been truly blessed with a career where I love to go to work.
Journalism can be a demanding career. You start with little pay and long hours. I gave up many weekends, long nights and holidays to do what I loved to do and I don't regret a minute of it. I appreciate, love and respect my family for being so understanding of my career choice and the time we sacrificed with each other.
I am at a point in my life where I no longer wish to ask my family to sacrifice time away from their wife, mommy and daughter. I need to spend more time with my family.
I want to thank all of you who have supported and encouraged me through the years.
I will certainly miss the news biz. It's in my blood.
As for what I will be doing after December 7th, my husband and I own a business in Joplin.
We opened Girlfriends Women's Only Fitness Center at 22nd and Main in December 2006. On November 15th, 2007 we opened a second Joplin location at 7th and Duquesne.
This has been an adventure to open two businesses, take care of a family and hold down a full time career at the same time. I am looking forward to building a successful business and instead of sharing the news with you each night, I look forward to seeing you in person as we are out and about in our communities.