Leslie Turk

Darla Montgomery returns to the airwaves

by Leslie Turk

The Wednesday routine was the same — up at about 5:45 a.m., making pancakes and sausage for her 17-year-old daughter, Alexis, and out the door at 2 p.m. to prepare for the 5 p.m. newscast on KLFY-TV10, one of three Darla Montgomery did each weekday.

Seconds before the 10 p.m. newscast was set to air that night, Montgomery didn’t feel well. The same agonizing headache she’d experienced exactly a week earlier — one the longtime headache sufferer wrote off as another bad migraine — returned. But this one was different; the pain wouldn’t go away and was intensifying. She told her co-anchor Chuck Huebner she wasn’t feeling well, and Huebner asked her if she could make it until a commercial break. She didn’t think so, and when she tried to get up, she fell to the floor.

Huebner grabbed her hand to break her fall and lowered her to floor, calling to the crew members to come over and elevate her feet. He turned back to Montgomery and asked her if she could hear him. She told him she had an “excruciating pain in her head.”

Read more about Montgomery's diagnosis, delicate brain surgery and courageous comeback in this week's cover story.