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Bill Bonds: Newsman of ‘Incredible Kindness and Breathtaking Boorishness’

Bill Bonds, legendary Detroit TV news anchor, died Dec. 14 at age 82. Bonds worked the bulk of his career at WXYZ, and also worked for years in local radio.

The Detroit Free Press said Bonds, who earned a nationwide reputation for his coverage of the Detroit riot in 1967, “was capable of incredible kindness and breathtaking boorishness.” He battled alcoholism for much of his life, though friends said he was sober for his final 10 years.

Bonds also spent time at WJBK, with elite market stints at KABC Los Angeles and WABC New York.

A family statement read, in part:

"Bill had a great passion for the news business. More than anything, he loved bringing the news to the people of Detroit. Bill believed we were a better community, if we were a well-informed community."

The Freep story has well over 100 comments. One, from Gerald Talerico, reads:

"Bonds was 100% Detroit, period!!"