Steve Chacon, a Channel 7 photojournalist popular among his colleagues and the LA press corps, died Wednesday about two weeks after suffering a stroke. Chacon worked at KABC since 1977. "Steve was the heart and soul of this newsroom," anchor Marc Brown said on tonight's newscast. The station's Robert Holguin says in a story that Chacon was "beloved" at Channel 7. Also this: "His hairstyle would change over the years, but his mustache was a recurring character."
Steve was a strong presence in the Eyewitness Newsroom and he will be sorely missed. He was an outstanding cameraman who shot what he saw and spoke his mind fearlessly and with a legendary sense of humor.
Steve was something of a contradiction. To the uninitiated, he could be intimidating. But behind the gruff voice and the rough-and-tumble exterior, there was a kind man who loved to make people laugh.
"Every day, every day he made you laugh. It wouldn't matter, it was the littlest thing, always made you smile," said ABC7 Photographer Shawn McCarthy.
"As serious as what we do can be on any given day, he always could find a way to make light of it, to a point that made it easy to get through," said Mike Merle, ABC7 News Operations manager.
"No matter how tough it got, no matter how hard it got, he was always there to make you laugh," said ABC7 Reporter Carlos Granda.
Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted for the first time in four days:
Very sad to learn of @ABC7 cameraman Steve Chacon's passing. Got to know him during the campaign - great guy, friendly and fair. RIP.— Eric Garcetti (@ericgarcetti) July 31, 2013
ABC 7's video:
I saw tweets in tribute to Chacon by a couple of LAPD divisions and the media relations staff of the Los Angeles Fire Department. From the Channel 7 newsroom: