Abilene Agriculture reporter’s last day on air ends 70-year family legacy

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ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – It’s the end of an era for Matt Smith and his family, as the radio waves on his show go silent.

Matt Smith’s final day hosting the Farm and Ranch Report was Friday, after 20 years on the air.

“The first day on the radio was one of those that I hadn’t expected,” said Smith, who started on the air in 2000. “My grandfather, the late Harry Holt, had gotten sick and he said, ‘I need you to do my radio show in the morning.’ I said, ‘You want me to do what?'”

Smith’s grandfather was Harry Holt, who was on the air for 50 years before him.

“I just looked at it as a job that needed to be done and I wanted to do it well for him,” said Smith.

It was a legacy that he had to live up to, but soon he made it all his own.

“My goal was to always bring the news about what agriculture does as we move forward,” said Smith.

While some dials have been turned, others became a piece of history.

“You realize he started it, laid the ground work and you do, you do feel connected,” said Smith.

While the air will stay dead after Friday, what remains is the memory of a voice or voices that feel like home.

“You move away from Abilene and you come back 30 years later and there was Harry Holt, it brought to that individual that made them feel warm,” said Smith. “Things don’t change. I came home, things don’t change, I hope some people feel the same. I moved away 10 years, came home there was Matt Smith.”


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