TV and radio personality Kitty Fitzgibbon remembered for her decades-long theater career


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Kitty Fitzgibbon was a longtime Wilmington television and radio personality who spent more than 50 years performing in a number of theatrical roles.

Fitzgibbon, 66, died recently after suffering a stroke, according to the StarNews.

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She moved to the Wilmington area as child in the 1960’s when her mother accepted a teaching position in the newly-formed drama department at Wilmington College which is now UNC Wilmington.

Tony Rivenbark, who serves as the executive and artistic director of Thalian Hall Center for the Performing Arts, remembers Fitzgibbon’s theatrical career which began at an early age.

“Kitty was frequently at rehearsals, she was 14 then, and then in ’67 we did a play at Greenfield Lake,” Rivenbark recalled. “She was Maid Marian and I was Sheriff Nottingham, and that was one of the first shows [Robin Hood] I did here.”

Ironically, Rivenbark was also in the last show in which Fitzgibbon appeared in entitled ‘The Book of Will’ where she portrayed the character of Anne Hathaway.

“We worked very closely backstage in very tight quarters and she would have to get up for me to put on my stockings, and I would have to get up so she could put on her stockings,” Rivenbark said. “We were all talking about the upcoming [COVID-19] virus and would the theater be closed and I remarked it was just like being in the Globe in the 17th century during a play about Shakespeare and talking about the plague and if the theater is going to be closed.”

Fitzgibbon worked at WWAY for more than a decade as a weather anchor and reporter. She also co-hosted a morning show with Craig Thomas on WGNI Radio.

According to John Staton with the StarNews, she was considered the “goddess of ceremonies” of fundraisers for Rape Crisis Center of Coastal Horizons Center.

“Her mother was a great activist, she spent her life searching for the meaning of life,” Rivenbark said. “Ann and Kitty were very much the same, very much alike, clearly the apple didn’t fall far from the tree.”

Kitty Fitzgibbon also led ghost walks throughout downtown Wilmington.

“A lot of people came in contact with Kitty and on stage, she was just marvelous, she was one of the stars of Wilmington, he said.

Her stage career in Wilmington spanned from 1966 to 2020.

“She was really a work of nature, Kitty just had everybody’s respect,” Rivenbark said. “She was a striking individual, gorgeous as a young lady and continued to be very, very striking and appealing all the way through.”

He says she will be sorely missed.

“Everybody had great respect for Kitty, she was a great star.”