Here's the Story Behind the Stories
For nearly fifty years, Dave Lopez covered every major story in the Southland. The veteran news reporter was a nightly presence in LA living rooms on KCBS Channel 2 for a remarkable 48-year career on camera. General managers and news directors came and went in the unforgiving world of major market TV news, but Dave outlasted more than twenty regime changes. LA's man in the street kept his head down, nose to the grindstone, and relentlessly chased breaking news. He garnered Emmys, accolades, and tens of thousands of fans along the way.
One of the first Hispanic reporters on a major station, Dave's inaugural on-air report on Channel 2 in 1977 concerned an apartment fire that nearly ended in tragedy because none of the firefighters on the scene spoke Spanish. His report ended with the note that the Los Angeles Fire Department was beginning a program to actively recruit bilingual first responders; officials were also thinking of offering Spanish classes at LAFD. Dave was personally breaking barriers decades before Mexican lives officially "mattered"-success he credits entirely to his upbringing.
Professional success came early, but the true measure of a man is his family. In this nostalgic look back, Dave recalls the values instilled by his hardworking father-a man he worshiped and feared in equal measures. It is also a love story that began in high school . . . and how the fearless reporter who thought he could conquer or investigate his way out of anything was forced to accept that some foes cannot be beaten. When he lost both his beloved wife and mother and his invincible father fell apart, Dave finally lost his unflagging optimism . . . and was forced to begin again just as the entire world of news was undergoing a sea change.
It's a Great Life If You Don't Weaken is an inspirational tale of faith, family, and the news from a true LA native. Set against the backdrop of every major story of the last half- century-from Vietnam War protests to the O.J. Simpson trial to countless politicians behaving badly-this story is a vivid remembrance of a life well lived, both on and off camera.