Book takes Hoosiers on a trip down memory lane: The Famous Faces of WTTV

70 years of WTTV

INDIANAPOLIS – Hoosiers are taking a trip down memory lane purchasing and reading a book that focuses on WTTV4 and its history.

Julie Young grew up watching WTTV. She fondly remembers Cowboy Bob, Janie, Peggy, Commander KC and Friday nights with Sammy Terry.

 “As far as I was concerned, they were as famous as Paul McCartney,” Young laughed.

Like many, Young earmarked life events based on which show she was watching at the time.

“Segueing from Cowboy Bob into Janie meant you were school age or getting ready to hit the bus,” she explained. “Being old enough to stay up and watch Sammy Terry meant you were growing up, it meant you were a little older. That was a rite of passage.”

Into adulthood, Young decided to write a blog post about Peggy. She had met the local celebrity when she was 3 years old.

“Peggy was doing a personal experience through the MD telethon, so she was downtown.  And the way the story goes – somewhat legendary in my family – apparently, there was a bunch of kids and she looked over my head at my mom and said, ‘What’s her name?’ And my mom told her, well, I didn’t see this whole exchange so of course you can imagine my 3-year-old self when Peggy goes, ‘Julie! You finally got here! You have arrived,’” Young recalled.

That’s when Young was put in touch with Peggy herself. Peggy sent Young a box of memorabilia.

“Buttons and different things from her various shows,” Young said. “Artwork that kids had sent in. And I thought…what a treasure trove.”

Young decided to gather all of the characters’ stories and write a book rather than a blog. Along the way, Young learned quite a lot about the station and the shows that were on it.

“WTTV was very much an all-hands-on-deck station. So, you might be selling advertising and you might be crew, and then the next thing you know you’re hosting your own show,” she explained.

That was basically what led to the Sammy Terry show.

“It was very much the little station that could,” she laughed.

Young interviewed as many people as she could before she wrote the book.  

“All of them were fantastic. All of them were great,” she said. “Cowboy Bob went right into his cowboy shtick, which was fantastic, because hey, yes, I was interviewing him but I was still a fan! Janie. Wonderful woman. I just love her. And Peggy? She’s become a good friend. The only one I did not get to meet–I did not get to meet Bob Carter. He was ill at the time, but I am proud to know, he was alive long enough for the book to come out.”

Young also interviewed Mark Carter, who played Sammy Terry.

“You become an 8-year- old all over again,” she laughed. “It took everything to not be hopping up and down.”

Young spent an afternoon in Sammy Terry’s dungeon. She even got to hold the famous pet spider, George.

Young released The Famous Faces of Indy’s WTTV-4: Sammy Terry, Cowboy Bob, Janie & More in 2013.

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