LOS ANGELES — Chris Burrous, a fixture on the KTLA 5 Morning News since 2011 and former anchor at PIX11, passed away Thursday. He was 43.
The broadcaster was found unresponsive at a Days Inn in Glendale, California. His death is being investigated as a possible overdose, Glendale police said in a news release.
KTLA President and General Manager Don Corsini and News Director Jason Ball issued a statement Thursday night:
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Burrous family. Chris loved sharing the stories of Southern California and connecting with our viewers. He will be remembered as a great journalist and a wonderful friend to many. He brought a kindness to his work and will be deeply missed by the entire KTLA family."
PIX11 News Director Amy Waldman also issued a statement:
“Chris was a well-respected journalist who was devoted to telling people’s stories. He brought a smile to the faces of everyone he worked with at PIX11, and our team is saddened by news of his death. He will be missed. Our hearts go out to his family during this difficult time.”
Burrous, the son of a farmer and a NASA engineer, launched his two-decade career after graduating from Chapman University with a degree in broadcast journalism.
Burrous came to KTLA, PIX11's Los Angeles sister station, in 2011 after spending 14 years as a reporter and anchor at news stations across the U.S. — primarily in California's Central Valley, where one of his parents was from.
After stints at stations in the Bay Area and South Dakota, he joined KGET in Bakersfield in 1999 as a morning news anchor. It was there that he met his wife, Mai Do-Burrous, a fellow journalist.
After anchoring the morning news at both KGPE in Fresno and KMAX in Sacramento, Burrous accepted his first job outside California with KTLA sister station PIX11, where he was an anchor.
Upon leaving New York for Los Angeles, Burrous told the New York Daily News he asked for a transfer so that his daughter could grow up near her grandparents. The family wound up settling in Porter Ranch.
At KTLA, Burrous helped extend to Morning News to seven days a week, anchoring weekends and covering breaking news on weekday mornings.
His weekend Burrous' Bites segments, on which he highlighted the best hole-in-the-wall eateries Southern California has to offer, were a viewer favorite.
He was also an integral part of the news team that led coverage of the region's recent devastating wildfires and ensuing weather hazards, as well as tragedies including the mass shooting at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks.