Rocky Balboa | Reporter Who Introduced Him to the World, Retiring (in Real Life)Written by Leroy Cleveland
Do you remember her?
Her name is Diana Lewis and she introduced a relatively obscure fighter to the world in one of the most iconic film scenes in cinema history.
That fighter's name was Rocky Balboa and the scene took place in the first of six installments of the Rocky series.
It was recently announced the famed WXYZ-TV Channel 7 newswoman, now a true legend in the news industry, has decided to step down after 35 years behind the Channel 7 desk and 44 years in television.
Unbeknownst to many, Ms. Lewis, 69, is a real TV co-anchor for "Action News at 5:30," in Detroit. According to the station, she has been the person Detroiters have trusted to guide them through stories large and small, good and bad, since 1977.
Ms. Lewis first signed on the air at WPVI-TV in Philadelphia in 1968 as a broadcaster. Four years later, she became a weekend anchor and consumer reporter in Los Angeles and made a name for herself as an actress with performances opposite Sylvester Stallone in the movies Rocky and Rocky V. She also made appearances on television shows including Twilight Zone, Hunter, The Gary Shandling Show, Murder She Wrote, The Million Dollar Caper, and All My Children.
"It was the warmth I felt for people that really helped connect me to the viewers," said Lewis. "It was part of my mission, to make a difference in the lives of everyone I met, said Lewis."
Diana has been honored with numerous awards, including the Silver Circle Award from the Michigan Chapter of the National Association of Television Arts and Sciences. The organization also recognized her outstanding work with two Emmy Awards and the Governor's Lifetime Achievement Award.
In addition, she has worked passionately for the advancement of women and to improve her community. Her work includes the Minority Organ Tissue Transplant Education Program. She was invited to speak before the Michigan Senate on the issue of organ donation laws and remains the only newscaster to have been invited to the Senate floor.
Despite her many acting roles, she will always be remembered, in the acting arena, as the reporter who introduced the world to Rocky Balboa.
In retirement, Ms. Lewis hopes to spend more time with her family and "relax and do a little traveling."
And unlike Rocky Balboa, she allegedly plans to retire... permanently.