Kelly Frey

News desk veteran and mother stays anchored through life’s challenges.



WTAE Channel 4 Action News anchor Kelly Frey fell in love with the city in the 1990s as an undergrad at the University of Pittsburgh. After several years down South, she was thrilled when her husband, Jason Luhn, who is currently a Major in the Air National Guard, was re-stationed in Dover, Del. That brought the couple back to the ‘Burgh. Jason was able to officially move here a few years later after joining the 171st Air Refueling Wing in Coraopolis piloting the KC-135 Stratotanker. For more than a decade, Frey’s smile has greeted TV viewers on weekday mornings. 

“It’s such a gorgeous city, and there’s so much to it,” says the West Chester, Pa., native of her adopted home. “It’s a wonderful city, and yet it’s a tough city. There are gritty parts and beautiful parts and incredible views. I love it.”

Last summer, Frey shared difficult news with her fellow Pittsburghers: She was pregnant, and her son’s prognosis seemed dire. At only 13 weeks, among other complications, doctors saw a large quantity of fluid collecting where the brain tissue should be. The diagnosis was terminal. But his birth in September was nothing short of a miracle—Bennett was stronger and healthier than expected. “He’s the happiest little guy, and we are going to do whatever we can do to make life as sweet and full for him as we can,” Frey says. “I still look at him and cry sometimes when I hold him because I can’t believe we have him.”

Bennett smiles and talks lots of baby talk, but some days are tough. He occasionally needs hospitalization and is set to attend the medical day-care center at the Children’s Home of Pittsburgh. Despite the challenges, you can hear the joy when Frey talks about motherhood.


Q+A

PM: When you have free time, how do you spend it?
K.F.: If I do anything right now, it’s sleep!

PM: What has it been like juggling parenthood and career?
K.F.: Jason is able to stay home with Bennett in the morning, and then I usually race home. My schedule is fairly set, which helps.

PM: How do you stay plugged in away from work?
K.F.: If it’s local-news time, I’m watching local news on TV. But then also my Blackberry is basically always with me.

PM: Have you heard from many people since Bennett’s birth?

K.F.: This community is just incredible. There have been lots of e-mails, phone calls and letters. I’ve read every single one.

PM: How is Bennett?
K.F.: He’s more than 18 pounds already and wearing 9-months-size clothes at 5 months! It’s going to be a journey with him, but he’s an amazing little boy. I know this sounds odd, but even at 5 months old you can see the determination in him.

PM: Your strength through all of this has inspired many people. What has inspired you?
K.F.: So many people that we’ve met along the way at Children’s Hospital—parents who have three children at home and then one child in the hospital with all kinds of the special needs. I don’t know how you juggle that and give them all the attention they need. But these parents do.

PM: Pittsburgh has great medical facilities. Has that helped?
K.F.: Children’s Hospital is just one of the best of the best—such incredible doctors. And then the Children’s Home—there’s not another facility like that around the country. You don’t realize these places are there until you need them.

PM: Any parenting advice for our readers?
K.F.: With Blackberries and TV, you can just get overloaded, and you don’t even realize you’re doing it. But you need to make an effort to invest yourself in the here and now, in the present, because children deserve that.

PM: Any plans for the coming months?
K.F.: I can’t wait to go to a baseball game with Bennett. I was thinking of Pitt football games in the fall, too. And for me, I want to do Lawrenceville. I’ve been to many of the shops at different times, but I’ve never spent a whole Saturday just going to one after another.

PM: Your favorite treat?
K.F.: Mad Mex. You can’t miss the Pick-A-Dip and the Super Mad Mex Burrito.

Watch Kelly Frey weekday mornings from 5-7 a.m. on WTAE Channel 4 Action News;
pittsburghchannel.com.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in December

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in December

This month's best bets in The 'Burgh.
50+ Things That Will Make You Enjoy Winter in Pittsburgh

50+ Things That Will Make You Enjoy Winter in Pittsburgh

Love it or hate it, winter is upon us. Because some of us may think there's a lot not to like, we bring you 50+ things to eat, drink and do –– and some helpful tips –– that'll keep the blues at bay.
Excellence in Nursing: Meet Our 2016 Honorees

Excellence in Nursing: Meet Our 2016 Honorees

Pittsburgh Magazine presents the honorees from its inaugural Excellence in Nursing awards. Meet our judges' choices and learn what makes them remarkable in their field.
Choreographed Style: Winter Fashion with The Pittsburgh Ballet

Choreographed Style: Winter Fashion with The Pittsburgh Ballet

A regal ruggedness characterizes the season's menswear looks.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The 412

The Mosaic Stairway: You've Never Seen Steps Like These

The Mosaic Stairway: You've Never Seen Steps Like These

When viewed from the foot of the South Side Slopes of Pittsburgh, the stairs ascending Josephine Street form a massive image that consists of more than 7,500 individual mosaic tiles.
Joe Manganiello Plays the Good Guy for Children’s Hospital

Joe Manganiello Plays the Good Guy for Children’s Hospital

The actor, director and Mt. Lebanon native is joining the board of trustees of the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation.
Pittsburgh Man Sets World Record By Lifting 1 Million Pounds

Pittsburgh Man Sets World Record By Lifting 1 Million Pounds

Matt Scoletti accomplishes the feat in just under nine hours.
Why Thanksgiving Comes Every Day for 3 Pittsburgh-Area Men

Why Thanksgiving Comes Every Day for 3 Pittsburgh-Area Men

They owe their lives to one man who lives on in each of them.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Hot Reads

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in December

Top 10 Things to Do in Pittsburgh in December

This month's best bets in The 'Burgh.
50+ Things That Will Make You Enjoy Winter in Pittsburgh

50+ Things That Will Make You Enjoy Winter in Pittsburgh

Love it or hate it, winter is upon us. Because some of us may think there's a lot not to like, we bring you 50+ things to eat, drink and do –– and some helpful tips –– that'll keep the blues at bay.
Excellence in Nursing: Meet Our 2016 Honorees

Excellence in Nursing: Meet Our 2016 Honorees

Pittsburgh Magazine presents the honorees from its inaugural Excellence in Nursing awards. Meet our judges' choices and learn what makes them remarkable in their field.
Choreographed Style: Winter Fashion with The Pittsburgh Ballet

Choreographed Style: Winter Fashion with The Pittsburgh Ballet

A regal ruggedness characterizes the season's menswear looks.
Restaurant Review: B52 in Lawrenceville is a Levantine Lifter

Restaurant Review: B52 in Lawrenceville is a Levantine Lifter

Omar Abuhejleh taps deep into his roots at his vegan cafe that's focused on Levantine cuisine.
Why You Can't Beat The Weather in Pittsburgh in The Winter

Why You Can't Beat The Weather in Pittsburgh in The Winter

I’ve traveled a lot of miles, and I still stare in bewilderment at people who tell me they’ve moved to a place because “You can’t beat the weather.”
Edit Module
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags

On the Blogs


The Mosaic Stairway: You've Never Seen Steps Like These

The Mosaic Stairway: You've Never Seen Steps Like These

When viewed from the foot of the South Side Slopes of Pittsburgh, the stairs ascending Josephine Street form a massive image that consists of more than 7,500 individual mosaic tiles.

Comments


All the foodie news that's fit to blog
The Café Carnegie Now Open in Oakland

The Café Carnegie Now Open in Oakland

Chefs Sonja Finn and Becca Hegarty helm the refurbished restaurant at the Carnegie Museums.

Comments


Not just good stuff. Great stuff.
Best of the Burgh: Pumpkin Patches in the Pittsburgh Area

Best of the Burgh: Pumpkin Patches in the Pittsburgh Area

We’ve compiled the best pumpkin patches for fall family fun.

Comments


Why Wait For Summer? Head to Kennywood's Holiday Lights

Why Wait For Summer? Head to Kennywood's Holiday Lights

The park's winter celebration is great for families and a fine choice for anyone who loves Christmas (and/or funnel cake).

Comments


Mike Prisuta's Sports Section

A weekly look at the games people are playing and the people who are playing them.
Big Ten-Champion Nittany Lions More Worthy Than Buckeyes

Big Ten-Champion Nittany Lions More Worthy Than Buckeyes

For some reason Ohio State is ranked No. 2 in the latest playoff rankings and Penn State is No. 7. That has to change if Penn State beats Wisconsin on Saturday night.

Comments


Style. Design. Goods. Hide your credit card.
Locket Full of Joy

Locket Full of Joy

The handcrafted piece opens to hidden treasures.

Comments


The movies that are playing in Pittsburgh –– and, more importantly, whether or not they're worth your time.
Ten Upcoming Flicks Every Oscar-Watcher Should See

Ten Upcoming Flicks Every Oscar-Watcher Should See

PM film critic Sean Collier picks ten forthcoming flicks likely to rake in nominations for the 89th Academy Awards.

Comments


Everything you need to know about getting married in Pittsburgh today.
Thinking Small: Pittsburgh Weddings That Are Intimate Affairs

Thinking Small: Pittsburgh Weddings That Are Intimate Affairs

Bigger isn’t always better, at least when it comes to these couples’ wedding ceremonies.

Comments


The latest tips and trends to refresh your home.
Seasonal Shopping: CMOA Store Holiday House, J.Crew Mercantile Opens Doors

Seasonal Shopping: CMOA Store Holiday House, J.Crew Mercantile Opens Doors

The Carnegie Museum of Art is full of Christmas cheer — and great deals. Plus, get the scoop on The Block Northway’s latest retail offering.

Comments


The hottest topics in higher education
Classic Christmas Tale Gets a Twist at Slippery Rock University

Classic Christmas Tale Gets a Twist at Slippery Rock University

An adapted version of “A Christmas Carol” will be presented during a seven-show run.

Comments