Don Hammond

Anchor & Reporter

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Don Hammond – WLTZ-TV First News Anchor & Multi-media Journalist

Don Hammond, an Army veteran and an accomplished journalist and broadcaster, joined WLTZ-TV First News in January 2017.

He anchors weeknight newscasts and reports.

Hammond served four years in the 25th Infantry Division from 1974-78.

He was honorably discharged and began his broadcast career at WLVV/WCNW in Fairfield, Ohio.

The attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan in March 1981 prompted Hammond to re-enlist in the Army.

He attended the Defense Information School to become a military broadcast specialist.

1981-84, he rose through the ranks at the Southern Command Network eventually becoming the nightly news anchor at SCN in the country of Panama.

Hammond also successfully completed the 7th Special Forces Airborne and Jungle Expert courses at Fort Sherman, Panama.

He finished his military career in 1986 as an instructor at the military broadcast school specializing in voice and diction.

Don re-entered civilian broadcasting as a radio news anchor at WKRG in Mobile, Alabama and then WQID in Biloxi, Mississippi.

In 1987, he joined WLOX-TV in Biloxi, Mississippi as a television news reporter. He was soon promoted to weekend news anchor.

In 1989, Don joined KCRA in Sacramento, California as morning and noon news anchor.

Hammond also served as a television news anchor at KENS-TV in San Antonio, Texas, WKYC-TV in Cleveland, Ohio, KCRA-TV in Sacramento, California, and at other stations.

He served as the Washington DC bureau chief for Sinclair broadcasting.

Throughout his career, former Army SSG Hammond has reported passionately on military and veterans issues. He will continue to do so.

Don is excited to be on the team at WLTZ First News in Columbus, Georgia, in part, because of its proximity to Fort Benning and the support the community provides to the important military mission taking place there.

Don is also glad that several of his army buddies live in the Chattahoochee Valley.

Don is a do-it-yourselfer and most comfortable in his tool-packed truck. He enjoys working on community projects where he can roll up his sleeves and contribute sweat and positive spirit to making life a little better for his neighbors.

If you have a story idea, email it to Don at dhammond@wltz.com.

Articles

Soldier Of The Week

The state of Georgia has produced some mighty fine army troops. This time the soldier of the week hails from Savannah, Georgia where he entered the army already armed with some marksmanship skills. Sergeant Anthony Heinauer began his army career…

Columbus Workers Out In The Early Morning Cold

29 Degrees in Columbus early Friday morning did not stop about ten construction workers from getting the job done in Columbus, Georgia. The workers have a project going now right in front of the…

Columbus Sweet Potato King

Columbus, Georgia gardener Willie Cochran really out did himself this time. He puts out a garden most every year at his Columbus home but this time he grew some things which are attracting a…

Let Don Do It

Larry From Lumpkin asked for a little help around his family homestead that had a few issues outside. The front step was rotting and so was some siding caused by water damage. The front…

Flooding at The Chattahoochee Riverwalk in Columbus

The Columbus Riverwalk remained closed this afternoon January 2nd 2019 as the waters of the Chattahoochee River continue to cause minor flooding along parts of the walk. The water is now back down below the flood stage of 27 feet…

Searching For an Armed Robbery Suspect

Columbus police need your help identifying an armed robbery suspect. The robbery happened on December 13-th around 11:30 p-m at the Summit Convenience store at 3809 St. Mary’s road. No injuries are reported. If you know the individual in the…

Wreaths Across America At Fort Benning

  Wreaths Across America began in 1992 and is now observed the 3rd Saturday in December at about 1,400 Cemeteries across the nation and now at Fort Benning. Before wreaths are put in place,…

Relentless Rain

Friday featured relentless rain in the Chattahoochee valley. The unwelcome rain made for a soggy drive home from work and school today, December 14th 2018. No reports of flash flooding to pass along. But no question the creeks and streams…

Cops, Kids and Christmas

Law enforcement officers from all over the Chattahoochee Valley in hot pursuit of holiday cheer for hundreds of needy children. Thursday afternoon December 13th the officers met at the Columbus civic center ice rink where some of the kids got…

Christmas at Riverside On Fort Benning

Hundreds of Army families are filled with the holiday spirit after taking part in Christmas at Riverside. Riverside is where Fort Benning’s Commanding General, Gary Brito lives. The Commander invited everyone over Thursday December…

Suspect Arrested In a Valley, Alabama Shooting

On Tuesday December 4th, 2018 Valley, Alabama police arrested a man in connection to a shooting on Greenberry circle. 30-year-old Gartavis Jackson was arrested and charged with attempted murder and discharging a firearm into an occupied vehicle. Maurice Clark was…

Fort Benning 1ST Security Forces Brigade Returns From Overseas

The 1st Security Force Assistance Brigade marks their return from a nine month deployment. 1st SFAB Uncased their colors in a ceremony Monday December 3rd, 2018 in support of “Operation Resolute Support” in Afghanistan. Uncasing of colors is a traditional…

Soldier of The Week

West point educated officers have a lot to offer troops under their command and that’s where the soldier of the week comes in. First Lieutenant Craig Ferguson is an Airborne Army Ranger. This young officer has served at the battalion…

House of Heroes 100th Ceremony

A major milestone is reached in the effort to honor and help our local military veterans. The Chattahoochee Valley Chapter of the House of Heroes completes their 100th home improvement project for a worthy Columbus military veteran and his wife.…

Georgia House Explosion

Two men are injured after a Georgia house explodes while they were working under the structure on Sunday. Investigators say the men were working with a torch in the crawl space of a Marietta home when the explosion occurred. Captain…

Funeral Set For Columbus Native, Model And Actress Kim Porter

The funeral arrangements for former model, actress, and Columbus native Kim Porter are set for this weekend. Porter will be buried at the Evergreen Memorial Gardens Cemetery on Saint Mary’s road alongside her mother and grandmother. Her memorial service will…

Romaine Lettuce Warning

If you have romaine lettuce in your refrigerator throw it out. The CDC is warning consumers to *not* eat romaine lettuce as it investigates an e-coli outbreak. This applies to *all* types of romaine lettuce including hearts of romaine and…

Soldier Of The Week

Troops with multiple combat tours of duty have special skills they can pass on to others within the ranks and that is where the Soldier of the week comes in. Staff Sergeant Daniel Davila is a skilled infantry mortar man.…

Soldier Of The Week

It takes an experienced non commissioned officer to help a unit train fight and win and that’s where our soldier of the week comes in. Sergeant First Class Ian D. Becker  first came to Fort Benning in 2003 for his…

Columbus Korean War Soldier Laid To Rest On Fort Benning

The family of a soldier who died in the Korean War finally able to pay their respects at his military funeral. This weekend’s funeral for Columbus native James Silas Streetman Junior took place at the main cemetery on Fort Benning…

Soldier Of The Week

A cavalry scout can be almost essential to successful army armor operations and that is where our Soldier of the week comes in. Sergeant First Class Joshua Norris has served in many leadership roles as a cavalry scout NCO including…

Silver Wings Excite Fall Festival

Who doesn’t like a fine fall festival especially one a year of planing can bring. Hundreds are taking in activities like a dunking booth, life size dinosaurs walking around for kids to talk to and if you feel lucky maybe…

Battle Over Absentee Ballots in Georgia Continues.

A federal judge issued an injunction Thursday October 25th, 2018 stopping the state from rejecting absentee ballots over signatures that allegedly don’t match what is on file. Georgia secretary of state and GOP candidate for governor Brian Kemp has filed…

Columbus, Georgia Korean War Veteran’s Remains Are Coming Home

    The remains of another soldier are coming home from the Korean war. The Chattahoochee Valley veterans council says the remains of Columbus, Georgia native Sergeant First Class James Silas Streetman Junior will be returned to Georgia November 1st.…

Soldier Of The Week

It takes tons of tanks to run Army Armor operations at Fort Benning and that’s where our soldier of the week comes in. Sergeant First Class Florian Grabis is a M1A2 Tank Maintainer who serves as an instructor subject matter…

Soldier of The Week

A top focus at Fort Benning is training to fight and win and that’s where our soldier of the week comes in. Sergeant Hide A. James serves in the 209th military police detachment as a training NCO. After entering the…

Fort Benning Soldier Arrested on Rape Charge

Auburn police arrested a  23 year old Fort Benning soldier assigned to the 75th Ranger Regiment on a warrant for rape. On May 12th officers found a female lying unconscious on engineering drive. The victim was taken to the E-R…

Former Army Medic Receives Medal Of Honor

A member of the secret service received the military’s highest honor for his heroic service as an army medic. Former Staff Sergeant Ronald Shurer was awarded the medal of honor during a white house ceremony Monday October 1st 2018. The…

Tuskegee Not Selected As Site For A New Air Force Trainer Jet

A new Air Force Training  jet won’t be built in eastern Alabama. Developers proposed Tuskegee’s Moton field as a site to assemble the T-100 trainer. The news is a disappointment for officials who hoped an aircraft plant would bring a…

6Th Operation For Burned Lagrange Firefighter

Healing is a long painful process for a LaGrange, Georgia firefighter who was badly burned fighting a fire on Labor Day. Josh Williams underwent his 6th surgery today. Williams was burned over 35 percent of his body. Three other firefighters…

Soldier Of The Week

Fort Benning is the center for military marksmanship training  and that’s where our soldier of the week is always right on target. The Army trained Sergeant Lane Ichord as an infantryman but now Sergeant Ichord trains Army soldiers how to…

Oktoberfest Returns to Fort Benning

The always entertaining Fort Benning Oktoberfest 10K Cross Country Challenge is the star of the annual Oktoberfest Celebration. The Cross Country Challenge is the most popular race on post. There is a fee and you must register for the 10K…

Soldier Of The Week

The U.S. Air Force turned 71 on Tuesday September 18th which is just one reason the soldier of the week this time is an airman. Staff Sergeant Kenneth Weiher has served in many leadership roles as an Air Force team…

Fake Gun At a Columbus School

Reports of a weapon at Northside high school in Columbus had police swarming to the scene. Parents also heard talk of a gun on campus. Principal, Mark Richburg, sent out a voicemail to all parents saying the firearm was quote, “a…

Red Tide Strikes Panama City Beach

The red tide bloom creeping up the gulf is reeking havoc in Panama City Beach. Travelers to the popular destination are sharing videos like this one courtesy of our friend rob carter with I Heart Media. The red tide concentration…

Soldier Of The Week

  Drill Sergeants mold men and women into tough combat troops and that’s where our soldier of the week excels. Staff Sergeant Christine Slough is one of the few women in the Army to become not only airborne qualified but…

Sniper Competition Comes to Fort Benning

33 two-man teams from around the world will participate in the 2018 International Sniper Competition Oct. 15th through the 19th at Fort Benning, Georgia. Teams from U.S. Army units, the U.S. Marine Corps, the U.S. Army National Guard, U.S. Army…