Former news anchor at Indianapolis ABC Affiliate WRTV was 53

Tanya Sumner, a former WRTV news anchor from Indianapolis ABC, has died. She was 53.

The journalist and politician was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of colon cancer in November 2022 after emergency surgery. WRTV reports that Sumner died at her home on May 24.

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“Time. Good health. Those are our only real goods. Our only real currency that matters,” Sumner wrote in her latest post on Facebook.

Sumner spent twenty years as a television journalist, including ten years at WRTV, where she was known as Tanya Spencer before she married. The former news anchor from Indianapolis, Indiana, left her post to pursue other dreams, including running for local government and serving in District Three on the Whitestown City Council.

Whitestown Town Manager Katie Barr said in a statement: “The Town of Whitestown has lost a dedicated leader who will leave a void in our hearts. Vice President Sumner was not only a dedicated council member, she was deeply rooted in our community and cared deeply for her family, friends, neighbors and colleagues. Her love for this community was infectious and will be greatly missed.”

Sumner opened up about her battle with cancer in a report that aired on WRTV in November 2023. The television personality said she had a rare genetic mutation called Kras G12C, which was “very aggressive” and “very fast growing.”

To treat the cancer, Sumner underwent chemotherapy, which ultimately did not help. Sumner also tried a drug treatment that did not stop the spread of cancer.

In the 2023 report, Sumner advised viewers to get a colonoscopy as early as possible to catch the cancer before it’s too late. The CDC recommends that people get colorectal cancer screenings at age 45.


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