Call me crazy, but I wanted to be a part of the last broadcast of Dick Purtan at WOMC 104.3 FM in Detroit, so I dragged my tired body out of bed at 5:15 AM CDT and tuned in via the internet.
Dick Purtan first came to Detroit in 1965, settling in at WKNR. When I was in 7th, 8th, and 9th grades, the big thing was to get the weekly Keener guides and see what was in the top ten. These Keener guides always featured photos of the DJ's on the opposite side. I had been a huge Bob Greene fan, but soon turned my allegiance to Dick Purtan.
I listened to his show for years and was glad his stint in Baltimore was short and he returned to the Motor city. I'm not sure which was my favorite aspect of his show - the gag calls or all his "character" friends. Or maybe it was the music with lyrics by Tom Sharp. I don't know for sure, but it was enough to keep me coming back day after day for most of those 45 years.
One of my favorite memories is getting rides to my Plymouth Road and Greenfield DSR bus stop from Redford, Michigan by my brother and we'd have Dick Purtan tuned in and be laughing uproariously by the time we got there.
Our move to Tennessee pretty much ended my listening to the show, but on those rare Central Time Zone mornings that I did drag myself out of bed, I often tuned into the show via the internet.
So, an era ends, and I have a feeling Detroit radio will never be the same.
Copyright 2010, ACK, for Generational