Kerri-Lee Halkett is leaving Fox 29.
The anchorbabe, who started at the station in 2002, has been off-air for several weeks with what she has told colleagues is a skin rash. A station spokeswoman told us tonight that Halkett is expected to return to work in the second week of October for a final broadcast and a big on-air sendoff.
“Philly will always feel like home, and I will never forget how welcome you have all made me feel. From the bottom of my heart, thank you Philadelphia,” Halkett said in a prepared statement Wednesday evening.
While her statement gave no reason for her departure and she did not return repeated requests for comment, Halkett has told colleagues that she was planning to move to Connecticut where her husband Kirt Mayland, an attorney, lives. Halkett and her 5-year-old son from a previous marriage spend weekends in Connecticut.
“Kerri Lee is a talented journalist and we will miss her passion and enthusiasm for the news," said Fox 29 VP/GM Patrick Paolini in a statement this evening.
Halkett, who won a 2009 Mid-Atlantic Emmy award for Best Anchor, helped launch the 11 a.m. newscast, and the 5 and 6 p.m. newscasts for the station. She also co-anchored the “Good Day Philadelphia” morning show for several years. The anchor, born in Victoria, British Columbia, is a graduate of Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and has formerly worked in Boston and Washington, DC.