CLEVELAND (WJW) — From the challenges of tragedy, can come some of the greatest examples of courage. That’s true here in Northeast Ohio.
A new book takes a look at 10 Ohio disasters that reveals courage in the face of adversity.
“Ten Ohio Disasters” author is Neil Zurcher, who was the first and only reporter at FOX 8 for a stretch of time. During his 54 years at WJW from 1967 until he retired in 2016, he also hosted One Tank Trips and wrote several other books throughout his career.
Zurcher says the idea behind his latest book is to highlight tragic events in Ohio’s history and tell the story of what happened afterwards.
“I wanted to find out and that’s what started the whole thing,” Zurcher said. “I remember many of the stories because I covered them as a reporter in my early years. Every picture on the cover is a story that I covered at one time.”
He said when choosing the 10 stories to include in his book, he started with stories he covered, including the blizzard of ’78, the Xenia tornado of 1974 and the Fitchville Nursing Home fire.
“We all as reporters have stories that haunt us all of our lives,” he said of the nursing home fire. “And this one certainly does. I got called to the story in the middle of the day. Over 60 people died in this fire down in Norwalk and it’s been pretty much forgotten because it happened the day after Kennedy was assassinated.”
Watch the video at the top of the story to hear more about the stories included in the book.
The book’s launch is Thursday at the Music Box Supper Club. Doors open at 5 p.m. The event starts at 7 p.m.