Paul Harvey, a Chicago-based broadcaster who was a fixture on radios for decades with his folksy stories and commentary, died today at the age of 90, according to news reports.
Network spokesman Louis Adams says Harvey died Saturday at his winter home in Phoenix, surrounded by family. No cause of death was immediately available.
He used to be on WGST-AM here in Atlanta for several years and moved around to a couple of other stations. He was heard by millions daily. And that, as he said, is “the rest of the story.”
Here’s the Washington Post’s take:
“Paul Harvey News and Comment” was a distinctive blend of rip-and-read headline news, quirky feature stories and, usually, a quick congratulation to a couple in Topeka or Omaha or Sarasota who had been married for 75 years or so. The news stories, and Harvey’s distinctive take on them — usually, but not always, from a conservative political perspective — flowed seamlessly into commercial messages for products Mr. Harvey himself endorsed.
Tom Hughes, former morning host at WGST-AM, offered his thoughts:
I can say I worked with Paul for almost all of my 35 years in radio. I think my first radio job was dubbing the Paul Harvey feed on to cart when it came down the ABC line. Wait for the blip and hit start. Every station I ever worked thereafter was a Paul Harvey affiliate until 680.
At WGST back in the 80’s, he had come to Atlanta for some reason and did his show from our Pharr Road studios. He rang the back door bell about 4am and came in, resplendent in a grey silk suit and tie. Not the customary attire in radio. He was all white teeth and cufflinks. He banged out his copy on a typewriter and just before his national show took air, he did vocal exercises. Making jabberwocky sounds and gritting and ungritting his teeth. After he was done, he was gracious to come on the air and chat for a few minutes (minus the jabberwocky sounds) but he never relaxed the persona