Tuesday, August 24, 2021

August 24 Radio History

➦In 1911...Durward Kirby born (Died at age 88 – March 15, 2000).  He was a radio, TV announcer/host, best remembered for The Garry Moore Show in the 1950s and Candid Camera, which he co-hosted with Allen Funt from 1961 through 1966.

Durward Kirby
By 1936, Kirby was an announcer for WLW in Cincinnati, Ohio. In 1937, an Associated Press news story reported that Kirby "made a name for himself" with his reporting on the Ohio River flood of 1937. He also worked at radio stations in Chicago and Indianapolis before the war.

Following the war, Kirby hosted Club Matinee in Chicago with Garry Moore on the NBC Blue radio network before moving to television in 1949 as an announcer. He also worked on Meet Your Navy and Honeymoon in New York on network radio.

Kirby also appeared as a host, announcer, or guest on other television programs, including serving as one of NBC Radio's Monitor.

➦In 1917...Dennis James born (Died  of lung cancer at age 79 – June 3, 1997). He was a TV personality, philanthropist, and commercial spokesman. Up until 1976, he had appeared on TV more times and for a longer period than any other television star. Often referred to as "The Dean of Game Show Hosts", he is credited as the host of television's first network game show, the DuMont Network's Cash and Carry (1946). James was also the first person to host a telethon (raising over $700,000,000 for United Cerebral

Dennis James
Palsy throughout his career), the first host to appear in a television commercial, first to emcee a variety show, and first to appear on video tape.

Born in Jersey City, New Jersey, James began his career in radio with WNEW (now WBBR) and moved to television in 1938, working for the soon-to-become-DuMont Television Network station WABD (now WNYW), which helped to found the DuMont network in 1946. James became the host of many game shows, such as the ABC version of Chance of a Lifetime (1952–53) and served as commentator for DuMont's wrestling and boxing shows, such as Boxing From Jamaica Arena (1948–49) and other DuMont boxing and wresting shows such as Amateur Boxing Fight Club (1949–50). He hosted the DuMont daytime variety show Okay, Mother (1948–51) with Julia Meade.

➦In 1950...the summer replacement radio show for Suspense, titled "Somebody Knows", was heard for the final time on CBS Radio. The program offered a reward of $5,000 for information that led to the solving of crimes. Somebody Knows began with the introduction, “You out there. You, who think you have committed the perfect crime — that there are no clues, no witnesses — listen. Somebody knows.”

➦In 1999...actress Mary Jane Croft, who frequently appeared in Lucille Ball’s TV & film projects, died of natural causes at age 83. She was a much-in-demand Hollywood radio regular from the 1940′s through the 70′s, with supporting roles in dozens of series such as One Man’s Family, Suspense, Sam Spade, Our Miss Brooks and Sears Radio Theatre.

➦In 2012...Bruce Dale Sommers died (Born - November 26, 1943). He was best known by his nickname "The Truckin' Bozo" and for his long-running country music show geared toward truck drivers.
Dale Sommers

Sommers hosted the overnight show from Cincinnati, Ohio-based clear-channel station WLW from 1984 to 2004, and it was carried by a small network of similarly high-powered stations across the United States. Sommers discontinued playing music on his nightly show, focusing on general and truck news, and talk from his listeners. Sommers announced his retirement from radio in 2004, but XM Satellite Radio was successful in getting him to do an afternoon truck show.

Born Glen Council in Humboldt, Tennessee, Sommers moved to Cincinnati with his family at the age of 15. The next year (1959), be began working for WAEF. Sommers worked for other local radio stations in Cincinnati, as well as in Evansville, Indianapolis, Seattle, San Diego, Miami, and Kansas City, before settling back at WLW in 1984.

Jay Thomas
➦In 2017...Jay Thomas died from throat cancer (Born Jon Thomas Terrell -  July 12, 1948).  He was an actor, comedian, and radio personality. He was heard in New York from 1976-79 on Top 40 station 99X, and later on Rhythmic CHR station WKTU, and in Los Angeles beginning in 1986 on KPWR "Power 106", where he hosted the station's top-rated morning show until 1993.

His notable television work included his co-starring role as Remo DaVinci on Mork & Mindy (1979–81), the recurring role of Eddie LeBec, a Boston Bruins goalie on the downside of his career, on Cheers (1987–89), the lead character of newspaper columnist Jack Stein on Love & War (1992–95), and a repeat guest role as Jerry Gold, a talk show host who becomes both an antagonist and love interest of the title character on Murphy Brown. He won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Comedy Series in 1990 and 1991 for portraying Gold.

In film, he co-starred in Mr. Holland's Opus as a high school coach with a flair for theatrics, and portrayed the Easter Bunny in The Santa Clause 2 and The Santa Clause 3. He was also an annual guest on The Late Show with David Letterman during the Christmas season, where he told a story about how he met Clayton Moore, who portrayed the title character on The Lone Ranger.  Beginning in 2005, he hosted The Jay Thomas Show on SiriusXM Satellite Radio, which aired every Friday afternoon on Howard 101.

➦In 2018... Chuck Brinkman, a KQV 1410 AM mainstay in the 1960s who became one of Pittsburgh’s most popular Top 40 DJs, died. He was 83.

Marlee Maitlin is 56
  • Guitarist Mason Williams is 83. 
  • Singer Marshall Thompson of The Chi-Lites is 79. 
  • Actor Ann Archer is 74. 
  • Actor Joe Regalbuto (“Murphy Brown”) is 72. 
  • Actor Kevin Dunn (“Samantha Who?”) is 66. 
  • Actor Steve Guttenberg is 63. 
  • Actor Jared Harris (“The Crown,” ″Mad Men”) is 60. 
  • Kristyn Osborn is 51
    Talk show host Craig Kilborn is 59. 
  • Singer John Bush (Anthrax) is 58. 
  • Actor Marlee Matlin is 56. 
  • Newsman David Gregory is 51. 
  • Country singer Kristyn Osborn of SHeDAISY is 51. 
  • Director Ava DuVernay (“Selma”) is 49. 
  • Actor-comedian Dave Chappelle is 48. 
  • Actor James D’Arcy (“Agent Carter,” “Dunkirk”) is 48. 
  • Actor Carmine Giovinazzo (“CSI: New York”) is 48. 
  • Actor Alex O’Loughlin (“Hawaii Five-0″) is 45. 
  • Actor Chad Michael Murray (“One Tree Hill,” ″A Cinderella Story”) is 40. 
  • Drummer Jeffrey Gilbert (Kutless) is 38. 
  • Actor Rupert Grint (“Harry Potter”) is 33.

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