Give the gift of life with WCIA 3 News on Wednesday, July 1 in memory of WCIA’s Dave Benton and Robert Reese. Each donor will receive a gift card with their donation!
This blood drive will be held at multiple locations, so check out the event schedule to find one near you! Appointments are required, so click here to schedule yours: bit.ly/wciablooddrive.
Or text WCIA to 999777
Here is a little background on WCIA Channel 3 and the 2 TV personalities who this drive is in honor of. Both of these individuals lost their very public battles with cancer.
-WCIA Channel 3: WCIA has been in operation since 1953 and is considered the “hometown” station for Champaign-Urbana and the surrounding areas. The viewing area for WCIA mirrors the CBSI and CICBC service areas with key audiences in Champaign/Urbana, Springfield, Danville and Mattoon. The station has a stellar reputation as being one of the most community driven and has sponsored many successful public service and charitable events throughout the year including: Operation Honor Guard (sending senior veterans to the war memorials in DC); A Day of Giving benefiting Big Bros. Big Sisters; Pounds for Pets (pet food drive), etc.
-Dave Benton: An Illinois television news anchor who continued to work while he struggled with brain cancer has died (May 2015). WCIA-TV news director Andy Miller said Dave Benton died Tuesday at home in Champaign. Benton was 52.
Benton in December told viewers he had been told he had four to six months to live but planned to work as long as possible. He left the air in April after more than nine years at the Champaign television station. Miller said hundreds of viewers sent Facebook comments mourning Benton to WCIA on Tuesday. Miller called Benton a model for working as a newsman and for handling terminal illness with grace. Benton is survived by a wife and two adult children. He grew up in Addison, a Chicago suburb, and graduated from Northern Illinois University.
-Robert Reese: In 2012 Robert Reese lost his battle with cancer. Robert was also regular blood donor. Robert actually found out that he had cancer after he had been deferred from donating blood on a few occasions at CBSI and was referred to a doctor. By doing this, Robert extended his life by being able to initially fight off the cancer he was diagnosed with. He was the chief meteorologist at WCIA in Champaign, Ill., died Tuesday night after battling pneumonia and cancer. He was 50. WCIA anchor Jennifer Roscoe announced the news on Wednesday evening’s newscast, saying, “It is with great sadness and heartbreak that I have to tell you this tonight. I hoped I never would.” She described Reese as “a weather geek, a music lover, a car nut and most importantly, our friend.” Reese, the morning and noon meteorologist, was last on the air in early September. His Facebook page was flooded with comments and memories from WCIA viewers Thursday morning.