WPLA in my Florida hometown of Plant
City was a daytimer when Hurricane Donna hit the center
of the state in the summer of 1960. The late George Friend,
a terrific guy, put me on the air to work emergency on-air duty
overnight and I stayed (in the company of Tampa Bay Radio
Hall of Famers Jim Maloy, Al Berry and Bob Collins) for a
couple years before moving on to WONN and WLAK (Lakeland), WTAL (Tallahassee)
and WFLA, WSUN for a couple weeks, and finally, thanks
to Ed Ripley, WDAE.
While working a.m. news at 'DAE in the summer
of '67, had a call from WFLA deejay alumnus Dick Eller
at XTRA in Tijuana, Mexico. A couple weeks later
was anchoring at "XTRA News over Los Angeles". Back to
the Bay Area after XTRA switched to music in the spring of '68,
hired by Roy Nilson to work with "The Stanley Steamer" doing
a.m. news at WLCY (Nice guy Claire Linn held
down the p.m. shift). Back to the west coast a week or
two before man landed on the moon in July, '69 to news anchor
and sports report at Westinghouse all-newser KFWB. Left
in 1971 to do three years of TV in Tallahassee before returning
to L.A. and "KFWB News 98" for another ten years, finishing
up as news director the last three. Since 1985 a staffer at CBS
all-news KNX Newsradio, the first four years-plus as
a general assignment reporter, then as Executive Producer,
and since April of '02 as Director of News and Programming.
Although neither existed in my Bay Area era, I'm a follower and
fan of the Bucs and Lightning, and keep an eye
on the Bulls, 'though I only made it a few months as a
member of the charter class at USF.
Ed Pyle first ballot selection, Tampa Bay Radio Hall of Fame.