JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Fifty years is a long time to do anything.
The year Freddie Rhodes started at Channel 4, a gallon of gas cost 40 cents, the microprocessor was first invented and Disney World opened in Orlando.
Five decades later, our beloved gentle giant is still keeping our team in line -- and blessing the community.
A deacon at Cathedral of Faith Church of God in Christ, Freddie is constantly doing things for others.
He’s been a devoted husband for 40 years, raised five sons and now has nine grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
A 53-year broadcast radio veteran, Freddie -- who is legendary for his baritone voice and size 17 shoes -- clearly has no problems committing.
His wife, Sara, describes him as mild, meek, humble, loving and caring.
News4Jax celebrated with Freddie five years ago for his 45th anniversary, so we knew we had to come back even bigger this year.
So we got even more folks in on our celebration.
From one News4Jax legend to another…
“Fifty years. Congratulations, Freddie,” said retired News4Jax Chief Meteorologist George Winterling. “God bless you in all that you do. It’s your old friend, George.”
Mayor Lenny Curry even recognized Freddie’s long term of exceptional service with News4Jax and declared Jan. 15, 2021, as Freddie Rhodes Day in Jacksonville! The mayor said he encourages “all citizens to strive each day to display the compassion for others and the unparalleled work ethic that Freddie has shown each day for the last 50 years.”
Along with his work with Channel 4, Freddie is the program director for Gospel station WCGL Victory AM 1360 in Jacksonville. He’s an award-winning announcer who’s been in radio longer than TV, believe it or not, and he’s well known in the industry.
“I want to take this time to congratulate my man, Freddie Rhodes, you know you’re one of my favorites. God bless you and may you have many, many more years,” said gospel musician Keith “Wonderboy” Johnson.
Freddie is motivated by his family, his faith in God and has rubbed elbows with some of the greats.
He’s right there with them -- high on a pedestal in our estimation, but never looking down on anyone.
Fantastic, radiant, enthusiastic, dedicated, determined, incredible, elevating us all -- that’s Freddie!
Congrats on 50 wonderful years!
Freddie Rhode is celebrating his 50th anniversary at Channel 4!