Those of you who have watched Karin and Abner over the years know there's something more to this anchor team than just a working relationship. The two became lifelong friends both on and off air.
Karin and Abner can joke with each other about sensitive subjects like who's older because nothing is off limits when you're family. "This is how close we are," says Karin, "when I was in labor and delivery, my husband Bill runs in and says Abner is just right outside can he come in? I said no! Not here!" Abner adds, "She'd been in labor for like 15 hours or something...not in any mood to have company. We are like family to each other. In 25 years, you go through a lot not just professionally, but personally and we've been there for each other throughout that time."
Abner, a Lubbock native and Texas Tech grad, first met Karin, a newlywed and Tech grad from Dallas, during her first day on the job back in 1978. Abner was a general assignment reporter and Karin had just been hired to produce and anchor the noon news. Abner recalls, "She used to part her hair right down the middle and she had a round face. She was kind of funny looking to me... I was funny looking too I'm sure...but I'm just saying when I first saw her that's what I thought: there's basketball face."
If you're thinking they joke like brother and sister, you're right. Karin says Abner quickly became the big brother she never had. The two were instant friends before they ever hit the anchor desk. Abner says, "We just took a liking to each other. Karin thought I was funny and she'd go home and tell Bill." Karin interjects, "He thought I thought he was funny." Abner continues, "Well you told me at the time." And Karin replies, "I was trying to be nice."
In 1979 Karin anchored the noon news with her news director at the time. He took vacation, Abner filled in, and the rest as they say is history. Karin explains, "When Abner left and the news director came back, people wrote in and said bring Abner back and I can't believe the news director was big enough to take himself off the air and put you on. He said you're better together."
A year later Karin and Abner moved to the six and ten o'clock news where their off camera rapport was sometimes confused for much more. Abner says, "Early on, when people used to think we were married. People would write in and say if there's a little spark there, you owe it to us to tell us and we'd say no, Karin is married... happily married. We're just friends." Karin adds, "When I had my baby, they congratulated Abner." Abner goes on to say, "They did and I said I had nothing to do with it."
In 1982 while Karin was in labor, Abner was rooting for her from the desk and he was there when baby McCay left the hospital. After all, he is Godfather to both Karin's daughter ,Morgan, and to son, Jacob. Now that Abner has a family of his own, Karin plans to play a big role in the lives of his twin girls.
The two families could not be closer, often BBQ-ing and going to Tech games together on the weekends. So, how do Karin's and Abner's spouses feel about them being so close? Karin says, "When Abner is not with me, he's off hunting with Bill. So they're just as good of friends, so it has never been a big deal. I'm close to his wife Tara, so it's been a wonderful lucky blessing."
Over the years, Karin and Abner have brought viewers much more than the news. Karin says, "He's a very funny person. You can't tell by looking at that (and points to his face) but he's really funny." Lubbock has literally watched them grow up on TV. Around KCBD, "Karin and Abner" is not three words but one: "Karin-n-Abner." They are truly a team in every sense and neither can say they'd want to continue without the other. Abner says, "If I did not like Karin, I would not be working here. That's the simple truth and I think she feels the same way." Karin shares, "If he died tomorrow, I'd cry for a long time... I really love you Abner."
Karin and Abner may be celebrating 25 years, but they're not going anywhere in the near future. They're still enjoying what they do and hope they have a lot more to accomplish at KCBD.
|25 Years of Karin & Abner: Raising Millions for Miracles|
|25 Years of Karin & Abner: On Air Together|
|25 Years of Karin & Abner: Individual Memories|