WKBT News 8 wins 2015 Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for ‘Tears to Water’

Hour-long special highlighted Jesse Parker's legacy, community impact

WKBT News 8 has earned a 2015 Regional Edward R. Murrow award for our hour-long “Tears to Water” special.

The Radio Television Digital News Association (RTNDA) announced WKBT won the regional award in the News Documentary category in small market television competing with stations in four states.

In June 2014, News 8 Anchor Mike Thompson and Photojournalist Travis Kobs traveled to Busolo, Uganda to highlight the need for clean water and the impact of Jesse Parker’s legacy and what his family and community have created.

Jesse was a talented athlete at Tomah High School. He also had dreams of service to social causes. Jesse’s life and dreams were cut short when he was tragically killed in a car crash when he was on his way home from a family vacation on July 4, 2009. He was 17-years-old. During his life, Jesse impacted many others through his endearing compassion and support for social causes. He wanted to bring clean water to people in Africa.

News 8’s hour-long special originally aired on WKBT on Monday, August 11. You can watch it in the video player above.

News 8 This Morning Anchor Jennifer Livingston was the executive producer for the special and contributed several reports. Thompson not only anchored the entire special from Africa but also produced and reported as well. Rounding out the team was the News 8 Production Department of Steve Londre and Kirk Arneson.

“This is a very prestigious honor and wonderful recognition for the outstanding work that went into producing this documentary,” WKBT News Director Anne Paape said. “It was the most ambitious project we’ve ever undertaken on many levels and is a shining example of the good we can do with beautiful storytelling.”

For information on #TearstoWater, visit www.news8000.com/tears-to-water.

For the full list of 2015 Regional Award Winners, visit rtnda.org.