Pioneer Broadcaster Arnold Freedman (Marc Edwards) Dies
Veteran radio and television broadcaster Arnold Freedman (also known as Marc Edwards) died on Feb. 8 in Sarasota Fla. A true media pioneer, he was able to turn a lifelong passion for journalism into a successful and storied career.
He was born in Albany, N.Y., in 1931, the fifth and youngest child of Sam and Etta Freedman. He would attend both Rider College and Siena College in New Jersey, although he never actually graduated, instead becoming a young cub reporter with the Albany Times-Union newspaper while in his late teens.
He soon moved to radio as a reporter and latenight disc jockey and talk show host after learning he could make $25 more per week.
In 1953, he became one of the first employees of a newly-created company: Capital Cities Broadcasting, that included a small Albany television station, WTEN.
As a news reporter, he covered worldwide news events, including national radio coverage of President Dwight Eisenhower’s inauguration in 1953, and television coverage of the Adolph Eichmann Trial in Israel in 1961, for which he and his reporting team won a Peabody Award.
As his on-air exposure and responsibilities grew, he was assigned an alias name — Marc Edwards – by a boss who considered the name “Arnold Freedman” an ineffective on-air news name. He would spend the next 46 years at Capital Cities — with all his work colleagues knowing him affectionately as “Marc” — as CapCities grew to become one of the largest and most successful media conglomerates in the industry, acquiring the ABC Television Network in 1987 before being acquired itself by the Walt Disney Company in 1996.
Edwards’ career grew steadily over the years as he left WTEN in 1965, working in news, promotion, marketing, and sales management positions at CapCities stations in Buffalo, N.Y., and New Haven Conn., spending the last 13 years of his career as president-general manager of KFSN-TV Fresno Calif.
He retired to Sarasota FL in 1999. He married his teenage sweetheart — Marcia Joan Sacks Freedman — almost 66 years ago in 1953, and was a loving caregiver to her as she successfully battled several illnesses.
He is survived by his sons and daughters-in-law, Wayne and Nancy Freedman of Atlanta, and Ken and Victoria Freedman of Columbus, Ohio, as well as seven grandchildren: Joseph (Jessica), David (Brittany), Stanley, Eli, Eric (Blair), Scott, and Jennifer Freedman.
A private funeral will be held in Sarasota. The family has requested donations be made to the Moffitt Cancer Center Foundation, PO Box 23827, Tampa FL 33623.