But when Jim O'Brien passed away in 1983, Lisa Thomas-Laury came on board as co-host of the parade.
"The first parade I did without Jim in 1983 was extremely difficult, for all of us," Dave said.
But the new co-hosts gelled right away.
- Watch Jim O'Brien and Dave Roberts host the Thanksgiving Day Parade together from the 6abc Archives.
"Dave is a selfless colleague," Lisa said. "He wants you to do well, and you get that feeling as soon as you sit down with him."
"Lisa's a gem, she's my partner," said Dave. "She's so kind and she's so giving."
The weather was sometimes chilly...
"We used to just put blankets, electric blankets, over our knees, and my husband would give me something to put down in my boots, and I'd have them in my gloves," she said.
But Dave and Lisa always had a warm reception from the audience, and each other!
"Dave would always look at, me and grab my hand or my arm," Lisa said.
- Watch Dave Roberts and Lisa Thomas-Laury host the Thanksgiving Day Parade together from the 6abc Archives.
"We held hands and said, "Okay, come on! Let's have some fun!"
Check out the video above for more memories from a collaboration spanning three decades!