Former WZZM anchor Lee Van Ameyde dies at 66

Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Lee Van Ameyde, a former anchor at WZZM 13 with decades of experience in West Michigan news, has died.

According to his online obituary, Van Ameyde died suddenly Friday following yearslong battles with diabetes and kidney disease. He was 66.

lee van ameyde 2012
A 2012 photo of Lee Van Ameyde speaking at an event. (Courtesy Bob Gould)

Van Ameyde, a native of Farmington Hills, started his career in broadcasting working in Ann Arbor, Flint and Detroit. He moved to WZZM in Grand Rapids in 1977 and stayed there until 2016. During his long career, he earned the Edward R. Murrow Award for investigative reporting, two Emmys and several awards from the Michigan Association of Broadcasters.

Storm Team 8 chief meteorologist Bill Steffen worked with Van Ameyde at WZZM for about 24 years. He recalled Van Ameyde as someone who “devoured news,” always reading the newspaper and books.

“He was a great family man, too,” Bill said.

Van Ameyde leaves behind a wife and two children.

A visitation is scheduled for 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 26 at the Metcalf and Jonkhoff Funeral Home on Cascade Road east of Grand Rapids. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help cover the Van Ameyde family’s expenses.

WOOD TV8 expresses our condolences to Van Ameyde’s family and his colleagues at WZZM.

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