John Silva: He Invented the TV News Chopper

Next time you turn on a local TV news broadcast and see an aerial view of a police car chase, a traffic jam or a burning building, thank John D. Silva. Silva, who died on Nov. 27 at age 92 in Camarillo, Calif., didn’t actually invent the helicopter itself. But he was the first, back in the late 1950s, to think of utilizing such an aircraft as an airborne TV studio, a vantage point from which journalists not only could …