When someone passes away, it’s memories that help us remember the person who holds a special place in our hearts. Many current and former staffers at 5 On Your Side have fond memories of former news producer Linda Williams. She died suddenly on May 14, 2023, at age 70.
After receiving a Bachelor’s degree in Communications from Lindenwood in 1972, Linda went on to earn a Master’s degree from Mizzou’s School of Journalism. That’s where Linda met 5 On Your Side’s Art Holliday.
"Linda and I were both from St. Charles, and we were in journalism school together at Mizzou," Holliday said. "I was an undergrad and she was a graduate student. My 21st birthday I was planning on hitting the town in Columbia when Linda asked me to be the photographer on a feature story she was doing. It was some sort of rodeo about at least 45 minutes away from Columbia. I did her a favor, giving up my big party night, and never let her forget it. She became a great friend and co-worker for many years."
Here's what coworkers past and present had to say about Linda.
"I just remember Linda being a calm and reserved demeanor as a producer when, in a newsroom, it can at any time turn stressful and chaotic. I also admired her for being so active in the Scottish community and sharing her love of her heritage with everyone.”
— Kelly Jackson, News Anchor
“She was a passionate producer who tried to put on the best newscast she could every single day.”
— Mike Bush, News Anchor
“Linda was one of the good ones. She helped a young producer figure out how to do the job and was always ready with an answer when I had a question. She was patient when sports would come in way over. And boy, the laugh. If you hit her funny bone, everyone around knew it.”
— Andy Mohler, Sports Producer
“Linda loved life. She was a caring loving individual. I was filling in as technical director on the noon show she was producing and right before the show started Danny ran in and said I was getting my car towed. I had to wait to after the show and sure enough my car was gone. Linda drove me all over the city to figure out how to get my car back. After a stop at the police station, parking ticket office and the tow yard, two hours later I got my car back. Linda was my saving grace and two weeks later she got her car towed right before the noon show. So, I took care of her and we just laughed the whole time.”
— Randy Schwentker, Chief Photojournalist
“I only worked with Linda a short time, but I remember the things she taught me to this day. Just do your best she’d say, that’s all you can do. She’d been a producer for years by that time and she was always willing to offer help without judgment. It meant so much to me. Over the years, we kept in touch and talked about family, traveling and pets… things we both loved. If we started laughing, watch out… it could be a while before the laughing ended. I will miss her.”
— Sonya Potter, Special Projects Director
“Linda Williams was one of my first “work wives” here at KSDK. I started here in 1984 and worked with Linda quite a bit. Her laugh, smile and sense of humor was always a plus. At some point Linda was looking to buy a house, I was beginning to think about buying something as well. She suggested I use her real estate guy. I ended up using him. We both bought property from the same person basically at the same time. We toured each of the prospective residents together and shared our thoughts and ideas about the properties in question. It was great to have someone to bounce ideas and thoughts off of and share the mutual experience.”
— Jeffrey Watkins, Director
“Linda and I shared a love of the Scottish artist Charles Rennie-Mackintosh and every once in while we sent photos of his work back and forth and mourned together when the gorgeous library he designed in Glasgow burned. Whenever I came across a Scottish or bag-pipe themed birthday or Christmas card - I sent it to her. I was very taken with photos of a ring she designed and asked to buy it, but she said she wanted to wait until her work improved before selling any. I thought it was perfect - as it was! I love that when I recall Linda - I see her laughing and smiling. And I can recall the sound of her laugh. She was a great colleague and friend.”
— Karen Foss, Former News Anchor
After leaving KSDK, Linda became an academic advisor at Webster University in the Communications department. She used her years of broadcast journalism experience teaching courses on television history and travel journalism. Linda retired from Webster a few years ago.
A graveside service for Linda was held Monday, May 22, 2023, at St. Charles Memorial Gardens in St. Charles, Missouri. The service included Scottish songs and music from her family with the St. Louis Caledonian Pipe Band. I believe Linda’s spirit was with us that morning, smiling with that unforgettable smile. It was the perfect way to remember our dear friend.
Remembering Linda Williams, Oct. 28, 1952 – May 14, 2023