After being rejected by David Payne, Zach Daniel, and just about any other weatherperson with a clue, KOCO Channel 5's three-month search to find a replacement for Rick Mitchell has ended. They have promoted Damon Lane, the station's former morning weatherman, to Chief Meteorologist.
CBS11 reporter Melissa Newton, who joined the D-FW station in June 2009, will be leaving soon to join her husband, Damon Lane, in Oklahoma City. They were married earlier this year.Lane, the early morning weatherman for KOCO-TV, has been promoted to chief meteorologist in place of Rick Mitchell, who left the station in August to join Fort Worth-based NBC5 as that station's eventual chief meteorologist. He has been at KOCO since August 2009....Newton, who has been working the early morning shift at CBS11, previously worked as an anchor-reporter at both KOCO and KOKH-TV in Oklahoma City. Sources say Newton is being wooed by two stations in that market to be a full-time anchor.Lane, whose birth surname is Smuzynski, married Newton under that name on Sept. 22nd in McKinney.
Geeze, I don't know which is sadder. Is it that KOCO just promoted Damon Lane to Chief Meteorologist, or is that we got scooped by a website called Uncle Barkey? I'll go with Channel 5. Sure, the egg on our face is embarrassing, but at least we don't have millions in advertising dollars vested in our mistake. I bet Mike Morgan and Gary England are still lighting cigars and toasting champagne as you read this.
In case you can't tell, I don't think this was a great move. Channel 5 needed to make a splash hire, and they promoted the offensive line coach. We'll see how that works out for them. And it's not that I don't like Damon Lane. I'm sure he's a good guy and everything, but he just has the looks, personality and feel of a morning weatherman. I can't see him keeping viewers during severe weather season or cutting into Lord England's or Magic Mike's market share. I could maybe watch him during an ice storm, but when a tornado's barreling up I-44, forget about it. For example, when he cut into the OU-Texas game during a commercial to let rabid Sooners fans know (gasp!) there were storms brewing near Altus, he genuinely seemed nervous and scared. You don't want a scared weatherman. You don't want one who plays with puppies in fields of wildflowers, either.
All that being said, there is one positive thing to report here. Damon's wife is cute and according to Uncle Barkey, she's being wooed by two stations in the market. Considering how she looks in the photos after the jump, I'd encourage a station to do exactly that. Here are some pics of the newlyweds:
Anyway, good luck to Damon with his new gig and congrats on getting married. I hope they both work out well for him.