The official word: Channel 3 Sports Anchor Jim Donovan announced today that he is leaving WKYC-TV on a medical leave of absence. Beginning next week, he will begin the process of a bone marrow transplant for treatment of leukemia.
“While it’s not our normal policy to discuss personnel matters, this is a unique situation and we want to make sure folks understand how much we love, respect and want to support Jim,” said WKYC-TV President and General Manager Brooke Spectorsky. “He has been battling leukemia for over ten years, and in partnership with his medical team has undergone multiple treatments. Jimmy is a very private person, and has managed to keep his incredibly hectic schedule and job without most of our staff and viewers realizing the physical and mental effort involved. But now, it’s time for him to try and beat this disease once and for all.”
“I’ve gone through a lot of treatment for close to 11 years and right now a transplant gives me the best chance for a full recovery,” added Donovan. “My wife, Cheryl, and daughter, Meghan, have been with me through it all and we figured now it was time to allow people to know what is going on in my life. My goal is to get healthy and to be back covering Cleveland sports as soon as possible.”
“Weekend sports anchor Dave Chudowsky will fill-in while Jim is home recuperating,” said News Director Rita Andolsen.
Donovan joined WKYC-TV in March of 1985 as a weekend sports anchor and was promoted to Sports Director in 1986. In 1999, Jim was named the radio play-by-play voice of the Cleveland Browns.
“Jim Donovan is a huge part of the success of Channel 3 and we will be thrilled when he is in good health and back on the anchor desk,” added Mr. Spectorsky. “Our prayers are with him and his family, and we know the viewers of northeast Ohio will be equally supportive.”