More Highlights for Jesse Helms
In 2002, Jesse Helms announced his decision not to seek reelection as United States Senator for North Carolina. He made his announcement from the studios of WRAL-TV, where he gained recognition with his editorials titled, “ViewPoint.”
Helms was the longest-serving popularly elected Senator in North Carolina’s history. He served from January 3, 1973 to January 3, 2003.
WRAL News anchor David Crabtree interviewed Senator Helms after his announcement. They covered a variety of subjects ranging from politics, his reputation as “Senator No,” his relationship with the media, and the tradition of senators carving their initials inside their desk.
Jesse Alexander Helms, Jr. was born October 18, 1921 and died July 4, 2008.
The friendship between British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and NC Senator Jesse Helms was special. Both fought for conservative principles in their countries. Helms stood by Thatcher and President Reagan as they fought to bring down the Iron Curtain. In April, 2001 Lady Margaret Thatcher served as the guest speaker at the grand opening the A.J. Fletcher Building, a 23,000 square-foot interactive museum that now serves as the headquarters for the Jesse Helms Center in Wingate, North Carolina. In his 2005 memoir “Here’s Where I Stand” Helms wrote, “From the beginning I knew she would be a leader like few the world has seen.”
The video features a meet and greet time with Thatcher and a Question and Answer session that took place April 27, 2001 at Quail Hollow Country Club, Charlotte, N.C. On April 28, 2001 Helms and Thatcher cut the ribbon at the grand opening of the Jesse Helms Center, followed by a speech by Prime Minister Thatcher.
The Right Honorable Margaret Thatcher ends her speech by quoting poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
“Sail on, O Ship of State!
Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
Humanity with all its fears,
With all the hopes of future years,
is hanging breathless on thy fate!”
May God always bless America!
WRAL sports anchor Tom Suiter shows Senator Jesse Helms letter of recommendation that Helms wrote for Suiter. The letter helped Suiter land his first job at WRAL.
WRAL-TV News Reporter Leila Tvedt covered the campaign of Republican Jesse Helms, while reporter Don Kobos covered Democrat John Ingram during the 1978 election.
“A Vision, A Voice” documents the first 40 years of WRAL-TV. Hosted by WRAL-TV News Anchors David Crabtree and Pam Saulsby.