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Matt? Savannah? GMA? NBC Execs? You won’t believe who did what in this summer network mystery special!

When high crimes are committed against network news careers  you can be sure of one thing: finger prints are never left behind.  Given the challenge, this kind of unsolved mystery needs a top television sleuth, someone willing to follow the trail while the blood is still fresh and revisionist publicists have yet to spin the story into infinity.

Preferably, the best choice to solve the high-profile case of the sudden disappearance of Ann Curry should have experience in the crime beat of morning news. So, for the greater good (of the blogosphere at least) I must volunteer myself, a long-time morning show executive and, just like NBC’s Detective Olivia Benson, a crime fighter whose skills have been sharpened by once having suffered a personal assault as well.

Curry Cringe w/Matt v. Teddy Bear Hug w/Al

And so we begin, first examining the suspects who were last seen with the victim, sitting on that couch as she tearfully said goodbye to her beloved audience.   Natalie? No, she’s not All About EveAl? No, he doesn’t even qualify as a red herring although he  likes to eat them. Matt? Now we might want to put Matt in a line up at least and not because he’s just re-signed a ridiculous new contract, one we can fairly assume was designed to make all his dreams come true.  No, we just need to look at the victim’s body language and Matt’s not off the hook quite yet. Read the rest of this entry »

For all fans of the ABC Megastunt broadcast, here’s another inside look at Nik Wallenda’s “life on a wire.”

 shelley ross daily Xpress




Nik Wallenda and his 58-year-old mother, Delilah, on 10-story high wire in San Juan, Puerto Rico on June 4, 2011. Photo by Shelley Ross


I just witnessed the most extraordinary event: not just for its daredevil -“ishness”  or athletic feat of balancing on a wire strung between two hotels ten stories above the ground in the light wind and rain.  I certainly have an excruciating respect for what that takes.

The extraordinary event that took place this weekend, in San Juan, Puerto Rico, was a mother and son celebrating their lives together and the lives of all their generations past. They were both steeped in  the knowledge  passed down,  with DNA of high performance and courage.

Filmed for Discovery Channel’s “Life on a Wire,”  Nik Wallenda had set out to honor his great grandfather, the Great Karl…

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Eulogy Delivered June 20, 2012, Golders Green Memorial Park, London, U.K.

*note from the author: I have never before posted a public blog on my personal family; I hope you agree the inspirational story of the life and death of my brother-in-law, Ray, is a worthy exception.

Raymond Julian Simone (April 17, 1956 – June 18, 2012)

To be born a Simone (nee Garcia) is a rare privilege. The rest of us, we all quickly learn, do not simply befriend or even marry someone in this family. Rather, one gets inducted into this clan who, like modern Musketeers, are all for one and one for all.

I learned that right away during my introduction to Dinah, the family’s legendary matriarch. She ended our first ever conversation about David with: “Just wait ‘til you meet my other son, Ray-mond.”

Well, Dinah, no one can ever say you didn’t prepare me. And right through to his last days at the North London Hospice, my sweet, sweet brother–in-law continued what I’ve been calling Ray Simone’s Great Adventure.

Somehow, defying the doctors’ timetable, Ray fought his way out of the fog of the war, the one he’d been waging against end stage liver disease. From what might have been his final sleep, he suddenly sat up and asked for a roast beef sandwich, an ice-cold beer and a cell phone.

Then for hours, which turned into days, Ray entertained us with stories, Monty Python impressions and his wry humor, some of it at my expense I’m extremely proud to say. I believe Ray mustered his strength not just to tell, but to show the ones he loved it will be okay; we are supposed to laugh again.

Dinah was right. Ray was amazing in so many ways, not the least his courage and humanity and grace. I will confirm that in the 22 years Ray has been my brother-in-law, I never once heard him feel sorry for himself or ever limit himself because of the obstacles he faced… like being legally blind. In fact, I routinely forgot he was blind and I bet a lot of people did as well. Now just think about that for a moment: you fall, you get up and you have detached retinas; you are going blind and you’re only four years old. Read the rest of this entry »