John Drury joined ABC7 as a news anchor for the 10 p.m. newscast in August 1984. Even after his 2002 retirement, Drury still contributed investigative reports, working with his long-time associate, award-winning producer, Alex Burkholder. John Drury passed away Sunday, November 25 at the age of 80 from complications of ALS.
Drury had an impressive history of reporting and anchoring news in Chicago. From 1979-84, he co-anchored the 9 O'Clock News at WGN-TV, while also earning numerous awards for his investigative reporting. Prior to that, from 1970-79, Drury anchored the news at ABC7, where he won awards and garnered critical praise for his credible approach to local news reporting.
From 1967-70, Drury served his first stint at WGN-TV, as 10 p.m. news anchor. Before that, from 1962-67, he both anchored and reported news for CBS 2, serving as Fahey Flynn's first co-anchor. Drury's broadcasting career began at WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee, from 1955-62, where he anchored and reported on the 10 p.m. news.
Drury's impressive history of reporting and anchoring has won him numerous awards. In 2003, he earned his last Emmy for "9/11/02 The New Homeland." Drury was named the 2002 Illinois Journalist of the Year by the Journalism program at Northern Illinois University and the 2002 Chicago Press Veteran of the Year by the Chicago Press Veterans Association. He also received the 2002 Award for Excellence in Journalism by the City Club of Chicago and was presented with the Distinguished Citizen Award by the Boy Scouts.
In 2000, Drury was saluted by the Museum of Broadcast Communications for his valuable contributions to Chicago's broadcast history. Also in 2000, the Chicago Advertising Club named Drury "Man of the Year." In 1996, Drury's peers in Chicago journalism named him to the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame. That same year, he was also awarded the prestigious Silver Circle Award for 25 years of outstanding contributions to Chicago television. In 1989, Drury received the Better Government Association's Distinguished Journalism award. He received Chicago Emmy awards for Individual Excellence in 1988, '87 and '83. In addition, Drury was named "Father of the Year" in 1983.
Drury's final newscast on ABC7 Chicago was on March 1, 2002. He was diagnosed with ALS after retiring. He is survived by Ann, his wife of 19 years, his four children as well as 10 grandchildren. His first wife, Marjorie Drury, died in 1987.