Longtime Los Angeles area journalist Bob Flick has died at the age of 84.
In the 1960s, Flick was a news writer and producer for Los Angeles CBS station KNXT (now KCBS). He worked at the Associated Press before that. In the 1970s, Flick worked for NBC in Burbank.
Flick’s longtime friend and former colleague Joe Saltzman wrote on his Facebook page, “the greatest tragedy of [Flick’s] life,” was covering the Jonestown Massacre.
On Nov. 18, 1978, 909 members of the People’s Temple died — nearly all from cyanide poisoning and at least 200 of them children — at the direction of cult leader Jim Jones following the murders of Congressman Leo Ryan and several others by temple members at a nearby airstrip.
NBC correspondent Don Harris and cameraman Bob Brown, along with a San Francisco Examiner photographer, were also killed in the ambush, and an NBC sound man and an Examiner reporter were wounded.
“Flick, a hardened journalist, was overwhelmed by the experience,” Saltzman wrote. “He never forgave himself for surviving when his colleagues were being shot down.”
Saltzman recommended Flick, who couldn’t bring himself to return to hard news, for a job at a new entertainment news show that Paramount was putting together. Flick would work as head newswriter for “Entertainment Tonight” until retiring in 1997.