Former 8's the Place anchor Beth Rengel authors book of second chances
From the outside looking in, it seemed like Beth Rengel had it all. A former Miss Texas who became a news anchor and member of the 8's the Place team.
But what you may not know is how much she didn't have, how hard she's worked to achieve her goals and the heartache that came along with them.
In this piece, Neile Jones takes a look back at what happened when she said something on this station that you still can't say on TV today, and how she's bounced back.
Rengel says she was a part of the dream team back in the late 1970s and early '80s working with Bob Howard, Don Woods and Chris Lincoln at KTUL.
In fact, she says, "I just loved the team I worked with."
But one night, the show got off track with more than 30 minutes of issues in an hour-long broadcast. Rengel started to tell viewers what had been happening on set.
"'We have been having some audio difficulties' and the minute I took the next breath every monitor went black," she said. "Every monitor on the table in the air, which means we're off the air. And I said in total frustration, '(Expletive) what's going on?'"
She says she wanted to apologize immediately, but was advised to let it go. Soon the broadcaster learned her comments went out over the air, and would eventually cost Rengel her job.
"I found myself on the floor with my mother saying, 'I can't believe this'," she said, tearing up as she remembers that day.
She also remembers how she couldn't escape what happened and the lingering repercussions.
"It was awful, I couldn't go anywhere, and I knew what they were saying." said Rengel.
But she would find her strength. You might say it had been "Anchored In Illusion," the title of Rengel's new book.
The text explains what a lot of people don't know about the former beauty queen's search for perfection, the stereotypes she fought in the world of news, the insecurities that haunted her and the dreams of a storybook home life.
"You have that second when you find yourself on that floor, like I did, and you have a choice, You can give into it or get back up, and that's what I choose," she said.
In fact, she went on to anchor the news in the much bigger market of Atlanta before returning to Tulsa, and eventually working for two other stations here.
Ultimately, the single mom went after a career in real estate and hasn't looked back.
"Everyone can reinvent themselves at any age. I don't think age can be a barrier any longer," said Rengel. "I wanted a profession that didn't matter what I looked like or how skinny I was or how tan I was. Something that I could have a service and I could help people."
And now with her book, she also hopes to inspire others to be true to themselves, trust their instincts and follow their dreams.
Rengel says she's made peace with what happened. She also says she feels like our interview kind of brought things full circle.
There is so much more she has to share that we didn't have time for in this story, but you can read all about it in her book.