Upstream. A Mohawk Valley Blogzine.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Ernie Tetrault. More Than A Hearing Aid Spokesperson.

I’m not sure how to read Albany Eye’s take on Ernie Tetrault. I don’t want to overreact the way Fred Dicker and Paul Vandenburgh did to the TU’s piece on John Sweeney’s smoking.

So let me just say this. I met Ernie Tetrault for the first time last Friday and was extremely impressed. I hope when I am 79 that I have the same vitality he has.

His hearing aid commercials are only one part of his life. While many people his age are content to play bingo once each week, he still produces two television shows--Metro and Justice Now, takes courses, travels and is an activist for justice in the Capital Region.

Whether you do or don’t like Alan Chartock, in the piece below taken from The Media and Me by Alan Chartock, Chartock credits Tetrault for his own rise in the world of television.

“The year was 1984. Mondale was running for President against Reagan and I was supposed to offer commentary on national and local races. However, something happened. Soon after I arrived, the anchor, Ernie Tetrault, unexpectedly turned to me and mentioned that since I was a native New York City resident, he wanted my views on a breaking story. It seemed that a man named Bernard Goetz had taken out two pearl handle revolvers in the New York City subway and shot the men he described as his attackers. Goetz considered the men to be thugs and said they were not “borrowing” money but extorting money from him, shot them and left them in terrible shape. Knowing that he was in real trouble, Goetz fled both the scene and the state, a wanted man, and Tetrault wanted to know what I thought about what had happened.

When you’re doing this kind of thing you’ve got to think fast. I answered that I had taken the D train on the IND line to the Bronx every day when I attended Hunter College, that I had been menaced several times, and that I didn’t care what anyone else was going to do but that I was going to send fifty dollars to the Bernie Goetz defense fund. The reaction was instantaneous. Every phone lit up. People were screaming into the phone, mostly in appreciation for what they said was my honesty, the news director moved me from twice a week to every night and my television career took off. “

Read a short bio of Ernie Tetrault.


  • Ernie Tetrault is an icon! I am truly amazed by his many accomplishments and his strong commitment. He has an unbelievable dedication to the many causes he is a part of, such as Justice Now. He is not afraid to dive into the truth no matter what it uncovers. He has more guts then many of the news people out there today. It seems as though the media is afraid to dig anymore…not Ernie.

    Not only is he an experienced news caster, but he a true gentleman with a kind heart. Every time I speak with him I learn something new. I am truly amazed by his accomplishments and proud that I have had the pleasure of knowing him. I am so happy that he is being entered into the Broadcasters Hall of Fame this Sunday in Bolton Landing. He truly deserves it! Hats off to you, Ernie.

    By Anonymous Theresa Balfe, at 9:49 AM  

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