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BRUCE NAEGELEN
September, 1987 - December, 1988

 

A 1974 graduate from Avon High School, Bruce was news director at a pair of North Carolina stations before joining the WDRC news department. He returned to those stations to program a new talk format and became a talk host for six years before becoming station manager, and later, general manager.

PRIOR: WBTB Beaufort, NC; WZYC Newport, NC

AFTER: WBTB Beaufort, NC; WZYC Newport, NC

TODAY: Downtown Morehead City, NC Revitalization; see his note (1-20-00) (e-mail).

audio:  August 1, 1988
Dave Nagel in 2009

DAVE NAGEL
spring, 1981 - 1986 and winter, 1996 - August 1, 2008

 

Dave had a long association with WDRC FM. He held various off-air production and on-air announcing positions during his first few years at the station. From 1986-96 Dave was the production director at crosstown rival WHCN. Dave returned to WDRC during the winter of 1996 as production director and became program director replacing Frank Holler. Uncle Dave was the pre-recorded voice heard on DRC FM during the overnight shift through much of the mid 2000s. He was released from WDRC in August 2008.

PRIOR: WHCN FM Hartford, CT

AFTER: Dave can be heard on WJMJ Prospect, CT (10-26-14) (e-mail).

audio:  July 25, 1981
WDRC's Russ Naughton

RUSS NAUGHTON
August, 1942 - September, 1959

 

Robert Russell Naughton was one of the stars of WDRC through two decades. He was born in New Britain, CT and met his wife, Jean Kirwan, while both worked at WDRC. She was an engineer and he was an announcer. Russ was originally hired as an announcer on W65H, WDRC's frequency modulation station, replacing Elliot Miller who joined the Civil Air Patrol. In May 1943, Russ took time out to serve in the 509th Bombardment Group on Tinian, in the Marianas, during World War II. Corporal Naughton's colleagues helped prepare the aircraft that dropped the atomic bombs on Japan. After the war, he hosted WDRC's wakeup show, The Yawn Patrol, and morning programs like The Old Music Box and The Shopper's Special. He also hosted Market Basket and Music Off the Record. Naughton and Jane Redding co-anchored a half-hour program that aired at 9:15 AM called Shopping By Radio. It featured on-the-street announcer Bill Sheehan interviewing shoppers and offering prizes for those who correctly answered trivia questions.

On November 1, 1947 Russ succeeded Harvey Olson as Chief Announcer. In December 1948 he celebrated the 1,000th edition of the Music Off the Record show, which he hosted from 5:00-6:30 PM. A brief item in the October 10, 1955 issue of Broadcasting Telecasting magazine indicated Russ has resigned to take an executive position at New England Laundry in Hartford, but evidently the job didn't pan out. By 1957 he was hosting a local record show from 9PM-midnight, but by 1958 was back on in the morning. Russ served in the Connecticut State Legislature during 1958-59, and after leaving WDRC served on the Glastonbury Town Council from 1960-61. The Naughton family moved to Kennebunk in 1974, where she died on March 29, 1997, and he died of cancer in 1998.

PRIOR:

AFTER: WCCC FM Hartford, CT; Jay Lennon Company, Hartford, CT investment firm; WCCC Hartford; National Multiple Sclerosis Society; executive vice president of Home Builders Association of Hartford County, CT; Tyrol & Wethey, Corp., Glastonbury, CT

TODAY: Russ passed away in Kennebunk, ME on December 22, 1998 at the age of 77.

audio:  September 24, 1955
Bill Neil at WMXJ

BILL NEIL
August 5, 1974 - spring, 1976

 

Bill Neil and Bob Craig only worked together at WDRC for two months but they had something in common. They virtually swapped shifts at WDRC and WPOP. When Bill did middays at WPOP under the name "Bill Colman," his competition at Big D was Bob Craig. When Bob left WDRC for middays at The Big 14, Bill inherited his 10AM-3PM shift, so they competed again.

PRIOR: WAVZ New Haven, CT; WPOP Hartford, CT; WCDQ Hamden, CT

AFTER: WBZ Boston, MA; WIP and WFIL, both in Philadelphia, PA; WNSR/WMXV New York, NY; WMXJ Miami, FL; WFLS South Florida

TODAY: Bill is a partner in a small South Florida law firm; (10-24-01) (e-mail).

audio:  December 28, 1975
WDRC's Diamond Jim Nettleton
click for Jim Nettleton interview

JIM NETTLETON
April 7, 1963 - August, 1966

 

Born April 26, 1940, Diamond Jim was the housewives companion on Big D as a member of both The Friendly Five and The Swinging Six. Jim studied at Rutgers for a journalism degree but ended up in the music end of radio. When he started at WDRC in 1963, just shy of his 23rd birthday, Jim simulcast on AM/FM from noon-3PM and 6-10PM. Five months later he did 1-4PM and still later, 10AM-1PM. He always found enough daylight to work in a game of golf. His journalistic training wasn't wasted at Big D; in April, 1966 he hosted two installments of the weekend news show, "Hotseat," on UFO's. And during the mid sixties he read early evening news headlines during the Long John Wade show, which is appropriate because they later worked together at two stations in Philadelphia.

PRIOR: WRSU Rutgers University; WPAZ Pottstown, PA; WHTG Eatontown, NJ; WATR Waterbury, CT; WAVZ New Haven, CT

AFTER: WFIL Philadelphia, PA; WABC, WHN, WPIX FM, all New York, NY; CHUM Toronto, ONT; WCAU FM, WFIL, WUSL, all Philadelphia, PA; WDAE Tampa, FL; WOGL Philadelphia; WARX FM Hagerstown, MD; WPEN Philadelphia, PA; WIBG FM Wildwood, NJ

TODAY: James Herbert Nettleton passed away from lung cancer on October 4, 2009 at the age of 69.

audio:  November 26, 1965
WDRC's Diane Novak

DIANE NOVAK
March-November 18, 1986

 

Born in New York city and raised in New Jersey, Diane earned a degree in communications from Syracuase University. While she did traffic on Big D in April, 1984, she didn't join the news department until 1986. She was actually a sidekick for controversial afternoon host, Sebastian, and was fired with him in 1986. They later worked together again at two other Hartford stations. Diane spent several years teaching school in Hobe Sound, FL before returning to Connecticut where she has been active in community theater.

PRIOR:

AFTER: WWYZ Waterbury, CT; WCCC Hartford, CT; WZMX Hartford, CT

TODAY: Diane is back in Connecticut and is teamed up again with Sebastian; see her note (8-22-18)(e-mail).

audio:  October 15, 1986
Bob O'Brien at KOLA FM

BOB O'BRIEN
February, 1986 - February, 1987

 

Bob truly belongs in radio. He grew up in Elizabeth, NJ earning a bachelor's degree in communications at Seton Hall University. Before coming to WDRC, he toured for two years as a tenor with The Duprees; perhaps that's what ignited his interest in collecting Doo-Wop and Rhythm & Blues 45's and 78's from the 50's and 60's. He came to Hartford after two years as specialty program coordinator at WCBS FM in New York. He was hired for 7-midnight on WDRC AM by Fred Horton who was soon replaced as program director by Glenn Colligan. Bob sometimes filled in for Sebastian on afternoon drive. He later did the overnight simulcast when DRC FM switched to oldies.

PRIOR: WSOU FM Seton Hall University, South Orange, NJ; WJDM Elizabeth, NJ; WVNJ-AM & FM, Livingston, NJ; WIXL FM Newton, NJ; WRAN Dover, NJ; WMTR Morristown, NJ; WCBS FM New York; WHYN Springfield, MA; WWYZ Waterbury, CT

AFTER: WMAS FM, both Springfield, MA; WMEX Boston, MA; WOCL Orlando, FL; WXTR FM Washington, DC; WYUU Tampa, FL; WFJO FM Tampa, FL; WLOQ Orlando, FL; KOLA FM Riverside, CA; KRWZ Denver, CO; KDES Palm Springs, CA; WJRZ Jersey Shore, NJ; WXKW FM Trenton, NJ; WOBM A/F Monmouth/Ocean, NJ

TODAY: Bob has written several books; visit his web site; (e-mail); see his note (11/1/13).

audio:  July 13, 1986

CHRIS O'BRIEN
January, 1990 - 1990 ?

 

PRIOR:

AFTER:

TODAY: ?

audio:  February 16, 1990
WDRC's Glenn O'Brien

GLENN O'BRIEN
September, 1993 - January 25, 2002

 

A North Branford native, Glenn got into radio in 1974 while he was a student at Keene State College in New Hampshire. His long run at Big D started in September, 1993 when Glenn was hired as an AM producer and newscaster, which he did for just over two years. In November, 1993 he moved to FM. Until January, 1996 he was part-time host, newscaster. For six months in 1996 he was a morning show sidekick/sportscaster. Glenn took over the 7PM-midnight shift in July, 1996 and also spent three and a half years as music director. See his note (2-3-00) (e-mail).

PRIOR: WKBK and WKNH FM, both Keene, NH; WCFR Springfield, VT; WKVT Brattleboro, VT; WLIS Old Saybrook, CT; WCNX-AM, Middletown, CT; WWYZ-FM Waterbury/Hartford, CT; WMMW Meriden, CT; WATR and WQQW, both Waterbury, CT; WMAS FM Springfield, MA; WATR TV Waterbury, CT; WBIS Bristol, CT; WNVR Naugatuck, CT; WNLK-AM/WLYQ-FM Norwalk/Stamford, CT; WLAD-AM/WDAQ-FM Danbury, CT; WEDH TV Hartford, CT; WYRY Hinsdale, NH; WNNZ Westfield, MA; WRCQ/WRCH-FM Hartford, CT; WICH Norwich, CT; WZMX Hartford, CT; WMJC FM Smithtown, NY; WBMW New London, CT

AFTER: Today Glenn does morning drive at WICH in Norwich (e-mail); see his note (8/18/08).

audio:  April 6, 1996
WDRC's Edwin G. O'Connor

EDWIN G. O'CONNOR
September 30, 1941- September 1942

 

Born July 29, 1918, in Providence, Edwin graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1939 and spent three years in the Coast Guard during World War II. His service at WDRC was cut short by the war. He was described as "a tall, curly-haired, robust, rotund Irishman," who worked nights. After the 6PM news he would curl up with a book in the corner of the studio and do the few commercial announcements and station identifications required during the evening CBS feeds. O'Connor also hosted a record show called The Ad Liner. During many of those shifts O'Connor banged away on the typewriter producing his own personal scripts, one of which he turned into a Pulitzer Prize-winning 1956 novel inspired by the career of longtime Boston Mayor James M. Curley, The Last Hurrah, which was later turned into a film starring Spencer Tracy. The Last Hurrah won a $5,000 prize from Atlantic Magazine in June 1955. O'Connor also penned The Edge of Sadness, The Oracle, and several other novels.

PRIOR: WPRO Providence, RI; WJNO West Palm Beach, FL; WBEN Buffalo, NY

AFTER: WNAC Boston, MA; freelance radio/TV writer for the Boston Herald using the pseudonym Roger Swift.

TODAY: Edwin died of a massive cerebral hemorrhage on March 23, 1968 in Boston; he was 49.

 
WDRC's Marianne O'Hare

MARIANNE O'HARE
October 2006 - March 31, 2008

 

Marianne came to the rescue, anchoring morning news on the DRC FM Morning Show with John Saville when Beth Bradley took an extended medical leave of absence. She grew up in Rochester, NY where she was involved in competitive rennis and skiing while attending Our Lady of Mercy High School. She graduated from the Syracuse University Newhouse School of Communications, taking a break during her second year to work at the United Nations in new York City. Marianne is a veteran of a number of commercial radio stations from Upstate New York to Connecticut. Marianne's self-produced program was syndicated by the Connecticut Radio Network for fourteen years. She is a publicist with Robertson Productions, which arranges national media tours for authors.

PRIOR: Connecticut Radio Network; WPKN Bridgeport, CT

AFTER: (e-mail)

audio - April 9, 2007
WDRC's Harvey Olson

HARVEY H. OLSON
April 22, 1935 - February 18, 1959

 

Nicknamed Longfellow because of his 6'4" height, Harvey Olson was one of the first--and longest--personalities at WDRC. Born in New York City but raised in New Bedford, MA, he was active in theater, appearing in the 1932 Broadway production of The Great Magoo. He joined WDRC as a staff announcer in 1935 and had the distinction of being the staff announcer the night CBS scared America during Orson Welles' Mercury Theater broadcast of War of the Worlds. Olson became Chief Announcer in September 1942 (replacing Ray Barrett who joined the U.S. Army), and was named program manager in January, 1945. Harvey yielded the Chief Announcer title to Russ Naughton on November 1, 1947. Harvey was sidelined for six months in 1949 while he recovered from illness in a sanitarium. For many years Olson hosted WDRC's late evening Night Owl, a record request program, which had a live studio audience of high school students on weekends. When he hosted the morning Shopper's Special, Olson used to ring a chime, or blow a boat whistle, between consecutive commercials. A period of ill-health landed Harvey in a sanitarium for the first six months of 1949.

Olson became vice president of public relations in October, 1958, but resigned a few months later to become alumni secretary for the University of Hartford where he taught radio and public speaking for many years at UH's predecessor, Hillyer College. Later he was news director and program manager for Channel 30. Ironically, in 1942 Olson interviewed a 15 year old kid during a man-on-the-street interview. Two years later he hired the kid to be a production engineer...his name was Charles Parker. Click for an article on Harvey Olson.

PRIOR: WNBH New Bedford, MA; WNAC Boston, MA; WATR Waterbury, CT

AFTER: WNBC TV/WNHB TV West Hartford, CT; executive director of Connecticut State Board of Education; consultant to Connecticut Education Association

TODAY: Harvey passed away September 6, 1976 at the age of 64.

audio:  December 15, 1949

ED ORZECHOWSKI
August, 1985 - 1989

 

Ed worked in the WDRC news department. He held the Sunday morning shift and also filled in for news directors Kathy Wyler and Andy Bricker.

PRIOR: WARE Ware, MA

AFTER:

TODAY: Ed is a freelance writer; see his note (9-16-06) (e-mail).

audio:  August 18, 1985
WDRC's Otis

OTIS IN THE NIGHTTIME
April 15, 1973 - February, 1978

 

A native of Bowling Green, Kentucky, Judd Coursey was in the Navy in Vietnam. After the military he spent time in Buffalo where he got into radio. Otis debuted on Big D FM on a Sunday afternoon from 4-8PM. Through most of his years at Big D he hosted the 7PM-midnight show during which he featured album rock. He was program director during his later years. While he never worked with morning man Bob DeCarlo at Big D, they teamed up for a morning show at WUSA in Tampa from 1982 till 1996. Read more about Otis.

PRIOR: WSAR Fall River, MA; WTXL Springfield, MA; WAAF Worcester, MA; WBUZ Fredonia, NY; WKSN Jamestown, NY; WFMW Madisonville, KY; WDXN Clarksville, TN; KPUR Amarillo, TX

AFTER: WRCQ Farmington, CT; KQIZ Amarillo, TX; KULF Houston, TX; WHBO Tampa, FL; WUSA Tampa, FL; KXGL and KJQY, both San Diego, CA

TODAY: Judd died of stomach cancer in Oldsmar, FL on May 21, 2001 at the age of 55; see Bob DeCarlo's note.

audio:  July 16, 1973
WDRC's Bruce Owens

BRUCE OWENS
prior to August 5, 1996 - August, 2004

 

Bruce grew up in Brewster, NY and attended Western Connecticut State College. While he started on WDRC FM, Bruce mostly hosted the midday show, 10:00AM-3:00PM, on WDRC AM. His shift was discontinued January 25, 2002 when WDRC AM returned to a daytime talk format, however Bruce hosted Sunday afternoons from noon till five on WDRC FM. When veteran Larry Wells gave up his Saturday shift in mid 2004, Bruce took over 10AM-3PM. The Sunday shift became 1-6PM and was turned over to newcomer John Saville.

PRIOR: WINE Danbury, CT; WVIP Mt. Kisco, NY; WEZN Bridgeport, CT; WPAT Clifton, NJ

AFTER: WHUD FM Peekskill, NY

TODAY: Bruce is morning man and program director of WBNR/WLNA in New York's Hudson Valley (e-mail)(9-6-04).

audio:  December 22, 1996
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