Fariss' draft number was coming up for the Korean War.  As he was making plans to join the Air Force, a draft notice arrived first sending Fariss into the Army for two years.  Because of  his prior experience in radio, Army brass assigned Fariss to help run the military radio station in Ft. Jackson, South Carolina.  Fariss married Betty during his military service and started a family two years later, eventually having three boys and a girl.

Upon Fariss' discharge in 1953, a friend gave him the chance to go to WDEL-TV in Wilmington, Delaware.  He also was offered a position at the new WAGA-TV in Atlanta.  Fariss thought he could learn more at WDEL, which had been in operation for several years, so he and his wife moved to the northeast.

"WDEL was an NBC affiliate and signed on at 5 o'clock with 'Howdy Doody,' says Fariss.  "They had what was called the 'Junior Executive Training Program.'  What it really meant was getting the most out of you for the least amount of money.  I learned to operate every piece of equipment in the television station.  After a while, I could look at the camera's lens and tell what kind of shot they had of me. I would go on the air and do a 15 minute newscast, and during the break I would run into the control room and run audio or change slides.  Then, after my program, I'd direct the next fellow's segment.  The cameraman on my segment was often the sports guy.  He'd put on a coat and do the sports.  Everybody in the 'Junior Executive Training Program" switched around and did everything."

The experience at WDEL would serve Fariss well for the rest of his career.  But Florida was still home and Fariss traveled back to look for employment opportunities in Tampa.  In March, 1955, Fariss learned that a new television station was starting operations in Tampa.  Fariss met with the owner, Walter Tison.  "Walter knew me from Tampa radio.  I went to see him and it was like old home week.  He said 'I wondered when you were going to come back home.  You ready to come to work here?  I'm starting a television station.'  I said 'sure' and that was it.  I went back to Wilmington, gathered my wife and three month old son and moved immediately."

And what were the call letters of the new station?  WTVT, of course!