DC-area news anchor Joe Krebs dies

(Courtesy NBC Washington)

(Courtesy NBC Washington)

(Courtesy NBC Washington)

(Courtesy NBC Washington)

(1/4)

D.C.-area news anchor Joe Krebs has died after a battle with cancer.

Krebs died Tuesday morning and spent last weekend surrounded by friends and family, labor union SAG-AFTRA said in a statement.

He was the morning anchor for NBC Washington for 18 years and was known for his pursuit and reporting of cold cases.

Krebs joined the network in 1980 from WBAL-TV in Baltimore, and before that he was an assistant public affairs officer aboard the USS John F. Kennedy and assistant prosecutor in St. Louis, NBC Washington reported.

“Being a news broadcaster is what I always wanted to be,” Krebs told NBC Washington.

He was also a union shop steward at WRC, where he “fought tirelessly for his colleagues at the bargaining table.” He served several terms as president of the Washington — Baltimore Local chapter of AFTRA and was the Chair of the National Broadcast Steering Committee.

“Joe was a true union man. His breadth of knowledge & experience was an enormous asset to SAG-AFTRA. The work he did in support of his fellow members & for the principles of fairness & justice will endure,” SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris said in a statement.

Earlier this month, Krebs received SAG-AFTRA’s President’s Award.

Krebs was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer four years ago and underwent treatment and procedure for the disease. He raised funds for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network’s PurpleStride walks.

“Joe was the kind of guy who always advocated for a cause whether that was on behalf of broadcast journalists, labor issues, or organizing events with the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network to find a cure via his work with PurpleStride,” the union said in a statement.

Tributes poured in from former colleagues.

He is survived by his wife Mary Lynne and his daughters and grandchildren.

Watch NBC Washington’s tribute below.

Abigail Constantino

Abigail Constantino started her journalism career writing for a local newspaper in Fairfax County, Virginia. She is a graduate of American University and The George Washington University.

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