Sam Rubin's 15-year-old son offers emotional tribute to dad: 'I am so grateful'

Since the sudden death of KTLA’s Sam Rubin on Friday, the station has been commemorating its longtime entertainment reporter. On Monday morning that included an appearance by Rubin’s son Colby.

The 16-year-old visited the “Morning News” set and spoke of his father while sitting in his dad’s usual chair.

Colby said he would tease his father: “I said, ‘No one knows you. No one knows who you are.’” But since his father’s death of cardiac arrest at his West Valley home, the teen said there had been an outpouring of support.

“People I didn’t even know have been reaching out,” he said.

Colby read a poignant message he’d written to his late father: “I love you so much. … You were the light in every room.”

Colby said his father was “always there,” for Boy Scout meetings, Disney trips and talks during car rides, where he heard about his dad’s passion for his work — “about how you got to wake up every day and do what you loved.”

Rubin became an integral member of KTLA’s “Morning News” soon after its 1991 launch. Rubin told The Times in 2011 that, at the start, ratings for the show were dismal: “There was just this sense that no one was watching. … There was this tremendous freedom in letting go.”

A breezy chemistry developed among anchors and reporters, and Rubin became known for his upbeat, easygoing interviews. Those qualities as well as a focus on news and local events gained the show popularity among Los Angeles viewers.

Outside of Rubin’s work, former KTLA anchor Carlos Amezcua said his former colleague’s life was centered on family. He was a father of four.

An emotional Colby said Monday that his circumstances were “surreal.” In his message to his late father, he said: “You’ll never pick me up from school again, we’ll never get to go biking, we’ll never argue about food, you won’t be at my wedding.”

Sounding older than his years, the teen advised: “Hug your parents, your siblings, your friends, every day. Every single day.”

“I had more of a father in 16 years than some people get for their entire lives,” Colby said, “and I am so grateful.”

Times senior writer Greg Braxton contributed to this report.

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