KTLA sacked anchor Mark Mester days after he was suspended for being off-script, calling out how the station was handling the firing of his longtime co-anchor Lynette Romero, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Station general manager Janene Drafs announced that Mester had been fired during an editorial meeting on Thursday, the Los Angeles Times reported.
On September 14, KTLA announced that Romero had decided to move on after nearly 24 years with the station and seek another chance, despite the station hoping she would stay with them for the rest of her career.
“KTLA has worked hard to make that possible,” host Sam Rubin said during a broadcast. “Lynette, we wish you the best of luck, we miss you and we thank you for all you have done for KTLA. … On behalf of everyone here, we wish you and your family nothing but the best.”
After Romero’s departure, Mester spent part of his show on Sept. 17 going off-script to apologize to viewers on behalf of the station, saying that the way it handled the dismissal was “rude, cruel, inappropriate, and it we are so sorry.”
“You didn’t deserve this,” Mester said, calling Romero his “best friend.” “It was a mistake and we hope you can find it in your heart to forgive us.”
KTLA has not responded to THR‘s request for comment on Mester’s departure, but did share a statement about Romero leaving the show.
“After 24 years, Lynette Romero has decided to move forward with anchoring our weekend mornings news‘ said Pete Saiers, director of the station’s news. “We really wanted her to stay and KTLA Management worked hard to make that happen. Lynette decided to leave for another chance. We had hoped she would record a farewell message for viewers, but she declined. Lynette has been a wonderful member of the KTLA family and wishes her and her family the best.”