Monday, August 18, 2008
Tom and I grew up together. Our parents were friends. Our families did things together. He and I did things together. We went through school together and graduated in the same high school class. My radio career began in 1962 and his the following year, at the same station: this one! (Back then it was WDMC.)
We worked together at WHTC in Holland. Tom went to WKMI in Kalamazoo in 1966. I followed him in ’67. A couple of years later, he was the Program Director there when he gave that up to move to our sister station in Charleston, West Virginia. I took over his job as P.D.
Soon after that our careers took different tracks. Tom left radio and I kept on. From that point on Tom did a lot of things, most of them successfully. He drove a beer delivery truck, bought and ran a popular tavern in Plainwell (Somers Place,”) raised and raced horses, bought and sold cars, and finally, when he was about 50, took off (literally) in a totally new direction. He became a flight attendant for Southwest Airlines!
Now retired from all of those endeavours, he has returned to radio. And I, for one, am going to enjoy hearing him again. I hope you will too.
Welcome back, my friend.
(A word about Ralph Grant: For about a dozen years Ralph lent his considerable talents to our afternoon show. Now Ralph has retired and he and his wife have moved from Kalamazoo into a condo somewhere in West Michigan. Our thanks to him for his many years entertaining us, both at WAKV and earlier at WKZO. Relax, Ralph, and enjoy yourself. You’ve earned it!)
Monday, August 4, 2008
OK. So it’s been a long time since I added anything to this site. But, I’ve been busy. Among other things I have been working to make some changes at WAKV. One of those changes has brought an old friend back to the radio.
Bill Anthony is our new midday host (10 a.m. ‘til 2 p.m.) Bill and I have worked together at a couple of other stations. First, at WKMI in Kalamazoo back in the 70’s. That was when that station was at the top of the heap, not only in Kalamazoo, but as one of the highest rated radio stations in the country. Back then AM music formatted stations dominated listening, and thanks to guys like Bill, WKMI was one of the most dominant.
Later we worked together at WQXC in Otsego in the 1980’s. But, Bill Anthony has a long resume, which also includes stops at 50-thousand watt, clear-channel WHAM in Rochester, N.Y., in Allentown, Pa., and in Battle Creek. Bill has an easy, friendly style, and a great voice which will be fondly remembered by former listeners and welcomed by new listeners. I hope you’ll give him a try.
Meanwhile, Ron Turner, who has hosted the midday show on The Memory Station for the past 12 years, will be cutting back on his schedule and moving to the Sunday afternoon show. Longtime Sunday guy, Lee Dershem, whose history in the Kalamazoo market goes back about 50 years, will be leaving the air, with our thanks for a dozen or so years here at WAKV. We will miss him.