A KTLA news anchor has been fired after going off script on the air to defend his axed coworker who he said was his “best friend.”
Mark Mester took a jab at the station on September 17 to support former co-anchor Lynette Romero, claiming KTLA didn’t allow her to say goodbye to viewers before she left her position.
Mark Mester was let go of his job for coming to the defense of long time anchor Lynnette Romero[/caption]
Lynnette worked at KTLA for 24 years. During his speech, Mark called Lynette his “best friend”[/caption]
Following his dramatic, off-teleprompter speech, KTLA announced Mester’s firing to staff in a meeting on Thursday, the Los Angeles Times reported.
During the Saturday morning broadcast, Mester said: “I’m gonna take some time to speak directly to you at this hour to tell you what it is that happened on Wednesday.”
“I wanna start off right now by offering an apology to you,” he said.
“What the viewers experienced was rude, it was cruel, it was inappropriate, and we are so sorry.”
He added: “I also wanna say sorry to Lynette Romero. Lynette, you are literally my best friend. You did not deserve what happened to you on Wednesday,” referring to a brief salute to the anchor that previously aired.
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Mester went on to claim that Romero was not allowed to say farewell to viewers after her 24 years on air and that she was moving on to new role outside of the KTLA station.
“All we can say about Lynette is that she had an opportunity,” he added.
“She wanted to take that opportunity, and if somebody wants to do that, my goodness, go take that opportunity.”
Mester then announced that a plane was flying over the station at that very moment with a banner that read: “WE LOVE YOU LYNETTE!”
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The flight, which he reportedly paid for, was posted on his Instagram.
Since he was let go, fans have taken to social media to support the journalist’s polarizing decision and to slam KTLA.
“So now Mark’s in trouble for what he said about his friend on TV I’ll stop watching channel 5 news,” one comment read under an Instagram video of Mester making a cheese and meat-stuffed croissant.
Another fan supported the news anchor by telling him to “keep your head up!”
“Thank you for defending Lynette. You are both super stars,” the fan added.
Mester’s decision to defend Romero was seemingly premeditated.
When a Twitter user asked early September 17 when Mark was going to address Lynette’s speedy dismissal, he replied: “8 am.”
Fans offered additional support for Mester and Romero on his social media.
“All my love to Lynette,” one Instagram commenter wrote.
They added: “It will take you far regardless of what happens next. Bravo!”
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Another post from a fan read: “Proud of you, Mark! You stood up for your friend and that shows true integrity and compassion.”
Since his firing, Mester has not yet made a statement to his fans.