Randy Ollis reflects on 30 years of news, laughs and friendship with Dave Barras

(WISH Photo/Dave Barras)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Three decades of David Barras. My “old” friend; your anchorman.

A true professional on and off the desk, despite some antics that I may or may not have been a part of, or the cause of.

(WISH Photo)

The laughs and memories are many. So too are the number of moments you trusted him when it mattered most

Among his many talents of making up songs, coming up with a quick joke or his rare distribution of his famed 8×10 glossy, he is a superb story teller.

His reporting spans nearly four decades. Have the hair color, clothing and facial hair changed? Yes, but the one constant has been the quality of a David Barras story.

Award-winning and breaking news knows no boundaries. Did the story affect you? Dave was there.

Near Madison, where the Marble Hill nuclear power plant plans fell through. To Russiaville, 20 years after tornadoes tore the town apart on Palm Sunday.

To College Corner, where Barras wouldn’t bat an eye at being in two places, or states, at one time. He found a school that straddled the Indiana and Ohio state line.

Dave and Randy do their traditional fruitcake exchange together in 2015. (WISH Photo/Dave Barras)

He took you there when the city celebrated. When the Indianapolis International Airport unveiled a brand new terminal. It’s predecessor sitting empty the next day.

He made even a night’s sleep memorable, as one of the first to experience it at the new JW Marriott.

Of course he wouldn’t miss a historic highlight, being amount the thousands converged on Indy for the city’s first Super Bowl.

That wouldn’t have been possible without the timeline that started with perhaps his biggest story: breaking that the Colts were moving from Baltimore to Indianapolis.

While camping out at the airport, Dave spotted a Colts corporate plane at one of the hangers. He asked a passenger on board, which ended up being an attorney for the team, if the Colts were coming to Indy.

They were. He got it on tape.

Mayor Bill Hudnut would not confirm or deny that the Colts were coming – until Dave showed up with that invaluable evidence. The mayor announced the arrival that night, but not before WISH-TV broke the story, thanks to Dave.

He was there for the beginning and the end of the old Hoosier Dome.

He was also there when the city fell short.

Dave delivering a much-coveted signed glossy photo to Randy during his battle with cancer.

24-Hour News 8 sent Dave to Miami where he’d learn Indianapolis would not win the bid to host a Super Bowl. And when the city made plans for a Major League Baseball team that never came.

We turned to him in times of tragedy, heartbreak and controversy.

He showed us the scene of the American Eagle plane crash in Roselawn, Indiana and revisited the gruesome Holinsberg murders, 10 years later.

And he stayed on top of scandal. Specifically, the largest white collar crime in Indiana history. Dave followed Tim Durham’s trail from Los Angeles to Indianapolis.

Dave is the ultimate journeyman.

His skill set of effectively telling and delivering a story for as long as he has,is something many have tried to emulate, but only few have with success.

His reporting, anchoring, and yes, even that autographed 8×10 glossy, are rarities.

Congratulations on an amazing career. We hope your retirement turns out to be terrific.