↑ Return to 2001 – 2003

May 2002

[important]To read in chronological order, start at the bottom and work your way up.[/important]

Eric, I remember hearing Pat Cloonan on WNCC. He worked there when I consulted WBXQ/Cresson in 1981-82. Both WNCC and WAMQ in Loretto did a remarkable job of covering the local news in those days. I also remember when WESA-AM/FM was a great local station for the Mon Valley and ranked #2 only to KDKA there. While I understand the economic realities of radio today, it’s a shame to see these smaller radio stations go satellite or simulcast. Even WMBS is on the satellite most hours these days. When WLSW is finally sold, I suspect we may lose them too. At least WZUM is still a holdout. Regards, Clarke Ingram. (May 29, 2002)


Hello there folks. Your site sure brought back memories of a number of people. Did you know that Ken Mease also worked at WPSL Radio (1510) in Monroeville, albeit for a short time, and I think Steve Zabriskie was there too at one time, but I am not positive of this. Charlie Apple is still spinnin’ the oldies, I believe at WKPA on weekends, and around town other nights freelancing as a DJ for parties and the sort. I myself worked at WPSL in the mid 1970’s until the early 1980’s. I graduated from the Monroeville Broadcasting Academy at WPSL in 1974. I did it all – News, Sports, Weather, DJ’ing, filling in for others running either their tapes or performing their shows. I subbed for Sam Pugliano doing his Polka shows, as well as Frank Powowski (Frank on Saturday, and Sam on Sunday). I sometimes even ran the tapes for Mike Folan for his Irish hour. I did some Engineering at the station, and on location Engineering too, as well as the remote broadcasts of Gateway Football games along with Joe Zachary, who I believe is still teaching in the Gateway School district. I think I even took garbage out on some days. The former manager, Tony Garofalo, is presently working for WCM, the riverboat company based in Cincinnati, Ohio, and I am presently the Chief of Police for the Monroeville Police Department. What a career change. I can still see old WPSL from my office window, but your site really brought back some great memories of days gone by. Thank you. George W. Polnar (May 29, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Actually, Charlie is at WLSW in Connelsville now. WKPA signed off in 1991 or 2.


Hi: Can you help me find an archive for the Rege Cordic Sunday Afternoon Movie? I’m trying to find a movie that aired between 1971 and 1973, but I don’t have much more info. I’ll know it when I see it. Thanks, RH Saunier (May 29, 2002)


Eric, Earlier today, I heard that new song by Kelly Osbourne(yes, that chick from the MTV show about Ozzy’s family) called “Papa, Don’t Preach”(a hard-rocking cover of the ’80’s hit by Madonna), and I really, really hated it. Have you heard that song yet? Also, what was the first Pittsburgh TV station to have a web site, and when was the site launched? Martin Connolly, #1 fan of PBRTV and Britney Spears!! (May 29, 2002)

Eric’s Response: I’m right up there with Britney?! Wow. Does she know that?! I want to say that the first TV station with a website…or at least to sponsor a website was WPXI with “www.realpittsburgh.com” now known as www.pittsburgh.com. But it could have been WTAE who operates www.thepittsburghchannel.com which was something else before that I believe.


Local sports talk show host runner-up in national contest. http://badjocks.com/localahole.htm.
(May 28, 2002)


I wish I could have worked at WASP when it still sounded like a local radio station. It was the era of fine newspeople (and other remarkable talent) on small town stations, like Kathy Kerestes at WESA, and still-legendary voices on Pittsburgh radio, such as those with whom I exchanged stories, usually with KDKA. I swapped stories with stations in several cities … including WASP … from my home base in the late 1970s and early 1980s, WNCC in Cambria County … which still sounds like a local radio station these days. Thanks … Pat Cloonan. (May 28, 2002)


Where is WNPA’s transmitter located? How far does its signal reach? When I am parked in the Hopewell Shopping Center parking lot, I can receive Ch. 19 very well on my B&W portable TV. I am surprised some other parts of Pittsburgh cannot receive WNPA. Although I am from Aliquippa, Beaver County, how high must I raise my VU-190 antenna (not only for Ch. 19, but for channels 22, 53, and of course, 4 — I can receive 2, 9 and 13, but the strongest of them all, the almighty WPXI channel 11)? Thanks. Much regards, PATRICK (May 28, 2002)

Eric’s Response: I’m surprised you can get 19 over there. Their signal beams from EASTERN Westmoreland County! That’s why most of the cable systems have to pick it up.


I found an article in the Indiana Daily Student, student newspaper of Indiana University in Bloomington Indiana, by Adam Lederer. He writes how dreadful Bloomington radio is since Rich Anton left WTTS. I asked him if he knew where Rich is now, and his reply was: “To the best of my knowledge Rich Anton does a weekend show on Q95 [WFBQ] out of Indy.” I looked at the WFBQ website and he’s not listed as “staph” as they jokingly call it, so I didn’t confirm Adam’s assertion. I expect he’s working part-time on the weekends, since they only list the full-time weekday staff plus one special show host on their website. Cheers, Melissa (May 28, 2002)


Isn’t Kelli (Olexia) at KDKA????? (May 28, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Anyone want to guess WPGH?!


How about bringing back Cordic and Co. Some of them may be alive!——-XPGHER.- (May 27, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Hahaha – the only one left is Karl Hardman. Trow died in November of ’98 and Cordic died in May of ’99. Both were very big losses.


Ed Schaeffer has been removed all together from KDKA and his time slot has been given to Paul Winters, with an open-talk format. Usually he is pre-empted by baseball, but if not, he says he offers an African-American perspective. – Steve (May 27, 2002)


What happened to Kelli Olexia of WPXI, formerly of WTOV-9 in Steubenville? Haven’t seen her on camera in a while, and she’s no longer listed on the station’s website. (May 26, 2002)

Eric’s Response: I thought Kelly Olexia was on Channel 4 WTAE.


What happened to Ed Shaffer’s spot on Saturdays with KDKA? Is he still with KDKA? Who is his new replacement? I heard him briefly. Any information on this change? (May 25, 2002)


Eric, I had to smile at the poster’s suggestion that KDKA hire either Doug Hoerth or O’Brien & Garry. Typical Pittsburgh, to reach 20 years in the past. Larry O’Brien retired, moved away and wants no part of the radio biz (you may remember that he quit WTAE early and left Garry to solo until the end). John Garry is close to 70. Hoerth has been on five stations in town already (KD twice) and is doing the same act he was doing 15-20 years ago. He has a loyal cult following but that’s it. I can’t stand Mark Madden but I give the station credit for thinking outside the box and coming up with a new idea instead of recycling someone who had already failed or had mild success. Vic (May 24, 2002)


Hi, My name’s Melissa Barsic, and I just found your website while I was looking for someone I used to work with: Rich Anton. A Google search for his name brought me to your site, but I never could find the reference for him on there. Maybe it’s in the mailbag archives. It seemed too unwieldy to search every archive, and I know it was from the way past when he worked in Pittsburgh. The bit I found on Google was: ” . . . to mornings on WHTX, displacing Bob Savage, who moved to afternoons, displacing Rich Anton, who moved to nights, displacing…yours truly. Since I was the odd . . .” I have no idea where on the site this might be hiding, though. Anyhow, I have more recent information than this. From the early 1990s through July 2000, Rich was program director and morning air personality at AAA/WTTS (92.3fm, Bloomington), “Indiana’s 92.3” — Where the Music Matters. I worked at WTTS from 1994-1996 as a copywriter/production coordinator/continuity director (all at the same time, so that should tell you something). I know that WTTS had new management and replaced all their air staff in the late 1990s, so I don’t know if Rich moved on of his own accord or retired or what. I was curious to find out what happened to him and was hoping your site would have some information. If you know of any, could you point me towards it? Regards, Melissa (May 24, 2002)


Hi Eric, After 25 years in radio WDAD, Indiana News Director Chris Lash will be leaving WDAD/U 92 to become the new General Manager of the Tyrone, PA Daily Herald Newspaper. Lash will remain in broadcasting as the co-host of the new “One Hit Wonder Radio” show to be distributed nationally. He also with his non-profit organization will be putting a new Christian Hit Radio LPFM on the air in Indiana later this year. Thanks, Chris (May 24, 2002)


As KD changes it sound it maybe changing it’s image….first off Doug has a job, he sounds happy, and might give second thoughts to going back to KD for the 3rd time. If I was Doug I’d stay away from those BIG DAWG (Clear and Infinity)..and stick with the mom and pop store…. If 1020 wants to drop sports weeknight….might I suggest Dimitri???? he would give KD that edge in the other direction that is missing from the once KING OF NIGHTTIME TALK!!! (May 24, 2002)


Debbie (Mills) is married , her husband is a Jeweler. I know she is not on the air at the present time maybe she is in the Jewelry business too! I’ll check it out amongst my Ohio Valley Cronies(sp?). Also sorry to hear about Thor getting the ax on KDKA Radio. If they decide to kill the Sports Talk why not 3 hours of O’Brien and Gary? Or Give Doug Hoerth the slot. Creative fun talk….why not! Trefdawg (May 23, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Thor gone?! Dear God!


Do you have any information on WUZZ (in Portage) and/or WKYE (in Johnstown) changing ownership or format in the next month? (I’m glad to have found your site….thanks!) Patty (May 23, 2002)


..And then there was George Eisenhower. That mellow never-to-forget voice on KDKA-TV so many years ago. Does anyone know more about him? Just wondering? And Pat Cloonan at WASP in Brownsville? He used to work at KQV and apparently is in the newspaper business now. Where is he? ———— Another piece of food for thought. Years ago, all stations constructed excellent “ground systems,” with pure, pristine copper systems beneath the soil under those towers. Thoe systems provided excellent signals… I remember the excellent signals from WKBN Radio in Youngstown at 570 on the dial…and even WGRP Radio at 940 in Greenville..as they simply inundated those frequencies with excellent signals…only to find now those signals have eroded to the exent the patterns are not as strong. Maybe it is just my car radio..I don’t know…but their signals are not as strong as they used to be…same with WPIC in Sharon at 790 and even with the Ashtabula, Ohio station…the former WICA..now WFUN at 970 on the dial. Any engineers out there with comments> I would like to know. (May 23, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Pat Cloonan frequently drops by PBRTV and writes for the McKeesport Daily News.


Hey, KDKA changed its sounders, sure, but the signature K-D-K-A jingle’s dead. You know, the one with four descending notes that’s been around for YEARS. It’s gone, replaced with a different melody that ANYONE could have adopted. What’s up with that? (May 22, 2002)


There was a great Disc Jockey named Debby Mills who was in the Wheeling/Steubenville area for a while. She was with Johny-o and they did a show together on WOMPfm and then WKWKfm. Johny-o is back at WOMP, but where is Debby? Do you know? (May 22, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Anyone in the Ohio Valley care to respond?!


Does anyone know what happened to Kit Baron? I first heard him on old WZUM. Later he moved to 104.7 WYDD. He left WYDD and Pittsburgh for Hawaii around 1976. Never heard about him after that. He had the best musical tastes in the progressive market in that era. (May 20, 2002)


Eric, I just found your site this weekend and all I can is FANTASTIC!!! Looking at all of the inof on the 13Q and KQV sites was a great walk down memory lane for me. I grew up listening to KQV when Dave Scott and Henry DeBecco and Chuck Brinkman were on the air and to relive those memories was great. Speaking of memory lane, I was a big O’Brien and Garry fan and I see where Larry O’Brien is retired in South Carolina but there was nothing on John Garry. Any news on what he is doing these days? Since I now live in the Balt/DC area I was glad to see your sister site for the radio stations in this market. Also, another question about Pittsburgh radio, why doesn’t a station in the area carry Imus in the Morning or the G. Gordon Liddy Show? Regards, Ron Harding (May 19, 2002)

Eric’s Response: John Garry is still in the area. Last I heard he was doing work at a station “in the sticks” but whether he still is or not is something else. Regarding Imus and Liddy, I think Liddy used to be on around here somewhere, but I don’t think either attracted an audience here. But then again, there are so many syndicated talk shows and not enough stations to take them on.


Eric, your correspondent Bill looking for AM directional patterns can find very similar information at http://www.radio-locator.com. Regards, Clarke Ingram. (May 19, 2002)


Eric: Elliott Broadcast svcs has done something to their site to eliminate the AM patterns. Is there some other site that provides this info? Bill (May 18, 2002)


Where is Kathy Kerestes…Mon Valley Minnie from the O’Brien and Gary show? Heard her recently on KDKA Radio doing a one hour evening show featuring Seton Hill College. She was an excellent news person on WHTX-FM and I remember her on WTAE-TV doing reports live and on TV news packages….(May 17, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Kathy has indeed been on KDKA recently. I believe that she is doing things other that radio and TV right now however.


Hi, We moved from Pittsburgh to New Jersey in 1995 and one of the first faces we recognized up here was Asa Arrons. He used to be on the NBC station in Pittsburgh as a consumer advocate and he is now the consumer advocate on WNBC in New York City. His bio is at this link: http://www.wnbc.com/wnbc/1169150/ I found your site while trying to figure out whether or not E.D. Donahey on FOX News is the same person as Edye Tarbox from Pittsburgh, and indeed she is… By the way, E.D. Donahey also now works on Bill O’Reilly’s national radio show that started a week or so ago. Phil Nickerson formerly from Forrest Hills and Scott Park near Pittsburgh, PA. (May 15, 2002)


Eric, I don’t think WTIE-TV in State College ever made it on the air. I believe it was a construction permit that was never built. Regards, Clarke Ingram. (May 15, 2002)


Dear Eric, Please list the following on your website as soon as possible: Radio licensee sought to assume or sublet West Mifflin broadcast-ready studio/office facility. Two fully equipped digital studios; T1 fiber optic; computer network; fully furnished. Also equipped with ground to air communications for traffic and/or news reports. Ideal for radio station wishing to relocate closer to Pittsburgh. Interested parties should contact Paul Beran, 412-884-7285 by May 31st. Thanks, ADVERTEL, INC. Paul Beran, President/CEO (May 14, 2002)


Hi Eric, Recently I read with much sadness Clark Race passed away. I knew him when he was a disc jockey in Albany, New York. Is there anyone closely connected with Clark, who I can e-mail about him to let them know how much we enjoyed Clark and what he meant to us. Thank you for listening. (May 14, 2002)


Eric, in your mailbag, it was mentioned that Channel 11 became WPXI in June of 1979. Well, it was still WIIC-TV when I visited relatives in Pittsburgh back in March of 1981, so it had to be in April or May of ’81 when it became WPXI. Also, there was once a station called WTIE-TV, on Channel 29, in State College, PA(where Penn State University is). What kind of programs aired on that station, and when did it go off the air? Martin Connolly (May 14, 2002)


(Re: Bill O’Reilly on WPTT and the new lineup) I don’t like it at all! In fact I will say I HATE IT! What good is a talk show if it’s recorded and broadcast later? Since half of his broadcast on WPTT is pre-recorded (the first half recorded and played last), what difference would it make if both hours were? Why couldn’t Bowyer go 7-10, re-broadcast the previous day’s O’Reilly show 10-12, and keep Lynn in her regular hours? As far as the O’Reilly show goes, in my opinion, unless they change the format, I think he’ll have very few listeners. That woman that’s on with him gets on my nerves. I’m a talk show listener. My schedule was: An hour or two of Richert on KDKA. Then the Mike and Mike show on ESPN radio. Then Pintek on KDKA. Cullen and Hoerth on WPTT , unless they off, then it’s ESPN til six o’clock. Now I listen to: An hour or two of Richert on KDKA. Then the Mike and Mike show on ESPN radio. Then Pintek on KDKA. Then back to ESPN til Doug comes on. And if I do listen at six p.m., it’s Thor on KD. I think Lynn will be the one that suffers with the new format. I feel Pintek will cut into her listeners more than Limbaugh did. (May 13, 2002)


eric, the kdka website is wrong …american pie was the last record larry played on his weekday show. ed barrett played the last record on kdka radio on a sunday afternoon the final airshift in 1992. i will ask ed again what the last record was. vito capaccio (May 10, 2002)


Eric. the Radio Station Building that Burned in Monroeville was WPSL 1510, WRUA, W___, WXVX, WPGR. The Original address is 1 Syvlis Lane. WPGR the last one to use the building, moved the Transmitter to Penn Hills. And the Studio’s to 960 Penn Ave. About 4 or 5 Years ago. Phil Z [ an Original WPSL [ W Punchy Sylvis Leib Owners Daughter ] Staffer. (May 10, 2002)


Reports indicate that the man who has now moved 620 WKHB from his city of license of Greensburg and who recently purchased WANB AM and FM in Waynesburg, PA has FIRED the entire sales staff. Do you really think he will keep the current format on the air? (May 9, 2002)


Former WSHH & WLTJ staffer Chris Lash and Michael J. Daniels known now as the “ODD COUPLE” based at WDAD, Indiana, PA have been hired to host a new syndicated radio show called One Hit Wonder Radio. The show will start later this summer and will steam on the internet at www.onehitwondercentral.com and on oldies and 80’s and 90’s based radio stations. Chris Lash (May 9, 2002)


Eric, An instrumental version of “Pick Yourself Up and Start All Over Again” was used on “Ricki and Copper” on WTAE-TV. Joe Gearing did overnight talk on WJAS in the ’60s and early ’70s before the station changed to 13Q and he started part-timing at KDKA. Larry Richert played the last record on KDKA during a regular weekday shift. They continued to play music on weekends and Ed Barrett did the last music show. KD did NOT play music from 5 p.m. to midnight on weekends after 1968. They were talk even then (and Pirates or Penguins games). They did play music in the weekend overnight shifts. Joel Zelle’s weekend shift was Sunday morning. It was a tradition that the Sunday morning host picked his own music. It started with Sterling Yates and continued with Terry McGovern, Jim Horne, Zelle and Trish Beatty. They used to have a full-time utility announcer who did weekend shifts (Joe Taylor from 1969-72). When he left, they filled those shifts with part-timers. Among those who worked weekend music shifts were Ed Sherlock, Bill Fleming, Ray Fallen, Ted Payne, Sara Lockard, Ron Brindle, Bob Curti and many others. Art Pallan worked a six-day week and eventually did Saturday mornings. Vic (May 7, 2002)


I worked with Joe in Greensburg in the late 90’s….Joe has a wry sence of humor and has countless stories of radio in Pgh and Greensburg….. FYI ….620 has moved it’s studios from 620 Brown Street in Greensburg to Route 48 and 30 behind Wendy’s. The folks in Greensburg should be up in arms about loosing 107 and 620 in less than five years…. And this isn’t the work of BIG RADIO !!!!! (May 7, 2002)


Hmmm how about Marie Torre from channel 2 and Lets not forget Jimmy Roach who dropped off the face of pittsburgh without so much as a mention….. got any ideas on them? (May 6, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Gone but not forgotten is Marie Torre who died a few years ago. I forget whether or not she died before or after Bill Burns, but I kind of think it was after. As for Jimmy Roach, he hasn’t dropped off the face of Pittsburgh at all. He spent several years down in Brownsville and is now hosting the morning show on Pittsburgh’s new Froggy 98.3.


According to the KDKA website the last song that was played on KDKA occurred in April of 1992. Julius May 20 (May 6, 2002)

Eric’s Response: Actually Larry Richert had the honor of playing the last record.


The first talk show host that I ever produced at KDKA was Joe Gearing in 1975. He was the first personality to host a talk show on Sunday overnights. Which he did the night of the Johnstown flood 1976. Joe covered the news from every county. Joe now hosts health and talk radio shows on 620am WKHB and 810 WEDO. (May 6, 2002)


Eric: Joe Gearing is a terrific person and a proud father (and grandfather), who–as far as I know–is still living in Derry. I first got to know Joe, Jr., who went by Joe Brien on WLSW and was their PD. At one point, they had a father and son show on WQTW. I hosted the “Saturday Night Hall of Fame Show” on WLSW shortly after Joe, Jr. left the business for good (He’s actually making money now!). When I last saw Joe, Sr.–at The Pond Restaurant in Latrobe–he was still on WASP, which shows how long ago that was! Joe, Sr.–always one of my favorite people–used to call me when I was on the air at WQTW, right before I’d read the news. He knew I was an easy break-up and would often say something funny enough that I’d have one hell of a time getting through the news without breaking up. If you speak to him, tell him I send my best regards! Ed Weigle (May 6, 2002)


Whatever happened to Joe Gehring? He was on KDKA, spent some time, I think, at other Pittsburgh radio stations and he spent many years working for Bob Sauber, who owned WFRA radio in Franklin, Venango County. Joe used to wear glasses, two feet thick and we was an undying, dedicated disc jockey….last I heard he may have run for a District Justice post somewhere in sw Pa. Reagrds, Eric Johnson, Erie (May 6, 2002)


The Washington Wild Things Frontier Professional Baseball season starts on May 29 th 2002. Bob Gregg from WJPA will call the games on WJPA-FM (95.3) in Washington. WJPA-AM (1450) will continue to carry the Pirates. They also will be heard on 1360-AM WPTT. As far as I know that is the only two stations carrying the games, although they are working on a Wheeling affiliate and a Mon Valley/Charleroi affiliate from what their spokesman said during an Open House on May 4th. (May 5, 2002)


Re: KDKA’s music format during the 70’s and 80’s Julius, KDKA played an Adult Contemporary format of music during the 70’s and 80’s. The only time they had a talk format was after 6:00 PM when Roy Foxx came on. Cigna had the nightime shift (9:00 PM till midnight), with Fred Honsberger doing the news at the top of the hour. Perry Marshall came on at Midnight til 5:00 AM. Jack Bogut had the morning drive with music, and of course his abundant stories. Art Pallan played music until 2:00 PM. Trish Beatty played music until 4:30 when 90 to 6 started. Bill Steinbach did the 90 to 6 news program. Even when Cigna started the K-Team morning show, he played music. Then somewhere during the late 80’s KD scrapped its music format and went to all news and information. Weekends were mostly all music, even into the nighttime hours. I remember Joel Zelle on Saturday and Sunday afternoon. At night I can’t recall the DJ. Of course Sunday night as far as I can remember had Father Ron Lengwen and his “Amplify” show. I’m doing this off the top of my head, so there may be corrections to the schedule. By the way, I also dislike KD’s new sounders. They’re annoying. Bill- Washington (May 5, 2002)


What was KDKA’s music schedule during the 70’s and 80’s, what was the music format, when did KDKA stopped playing music and why and according to one of the posters, a person named Trish played music during the 90’s, if that’s so why? Julius May 20 (May 4, 2002)

Eric’s Response: The only Trish on KDKA that I can think of would be Trish Beatty.


Is it my imagination…since they have put all of these sounders and id’s and :30 to :60 second reminders that you are listening to NEWS Talk KDKA. all that you hear is this older announcer on the id . i punch out and then i punch back in again and he’s on again and then the local announcer repeats the same thing. i think it’s too much clutter and not enough content. It reminds me of when KQV started doing news in 1975 and was part of the old NBC NIS service…News Information and Sports and that’s all they kept saying over and over. NBC N.I.S. went the way of the stutz bearcat…I hope KD doesn’t. (May 4, 2002)