October 02 2008 at 10:13:42 Name:
Lee Woodward Topic: Wrasslin' Comments: One of the first live events I saw at KOTV,
after I was hired in June of 1957, was "Live Wrestling."
At that time, an elevated ring was set up in the North end of the studio.
There were a few rows of metal chairs set up around the ring.
There was an area along the west wall that served as a dressing room. It
was only about five feet wide and ran almost the length of the studio. This
is where the wrestlers would plan out their routines.
I can't remember any of the wrestlers' names except for Danny Hodge. There
was a fellow who referred to himself in interviews as "A Cadillac and diamond
It was all pretty primitive. I do remember that they couldn't do the routine
where they get up on the ropes and dive off on someone, because...at that
height, they would be up in the lights; or, the cameras (B&W) would have
to shoot into the light and that was a BIG no-no.
I can't even remember how long that lasted. I don't think KOTV carried it
Danny Hodge and other pro wrestlers can be seen on the
Skandar Akbar was recently mentioned in the Tulsa World's
& Now feature.
October 01 2008 at 16:11:57 Name: Richard Hamby, CHS '60, TU '68 Topic: Tulsa pro wrestlers and social
clubs Email: hambyra at hotmail daht
com Comments: Still love the site... gets better and better...
a trip and fall down memory lane... thanks.
Another "social club": "Ramblers" at Central HS in the 50s.
Another Tulsa pro wrestler: Angelo Savoldi. They traveled on a circuit. Angelo
was a bad guy in Tulsa, but the hero guy when they were back east (somewhere
in PA I think, where there were a lot more Italians).
When we first moved to Tulsa, we lived in next to Tulsa Country Club in "The
Apartments", that huge complex in Osage County built at the end of WWII when
housing was short. (A lot of Douglas and AA people lived there, but also
oil company people, lawyers, etc..)
The Savoldis and several other pro wrestling families lived down the street
(Mario Savoldi was a friend of mine from Osage Elementary School days). I
remember going down the street to watch the wrestlers practice their routines.
They had a whole apartment fitted out for practice, floor and wall pads.
My dad got tickets to the big "Baby's Milk Fund" benefit matches every year
at the Fairgrounds Coliseum, and he and I would go. He would tell my mom
"...because it's for charity !"
September 30 2008 at 21:09:10 Name: Mike Bruchas Topic: "Here's to the Fair! The Tulsa State
Comments: Thank you, Brer Ransom, for the
September 29 2008 at 01:40:27 Name: Webmaster Topic: Bible Bowl on KJRH in the 1970s
The "Bible Bowl" was a kiddie quiz show produced at KJRH in the late 70s.
Local kids competed on teams of "Bible Boys" or "Gospel Girls". Several people
have have written in about it over the years.
I found this video on YouTube. I'm not sure this is the Tulsa version
of the show, but I am told by a 1977 participant that the kids' T-shirts
looked like these. A robot was involved in the proceedings somehow, but it
wasn't Oom-A-Gog, coming out of retirement.
September 28 2008 at 16:35:35 Name: Webmaster Topic: Mystery of the B Girls hypothesis
I can only find two of the B girl photos in the Beryl
Ford Collection. Perhaps they were heralding the coming of
Beef Baloney to Tulsa TV some 40 years in the
(Later) I feel pretty sure the letters didn't stand for "Bible Bowl" (see
item just above).
September 27 2008 at 18:39:37 Name: Leah Topic: A Note Back Home Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Comments: I've noticed that quite a few people who frequent
this site worked in radio at T.U. in the late 50s and also have participated
in the Tulsa Easter Pageant and have worked
with Tulsa Opera. A few of your names seem familiar and I believe you may
have known my mother, Barbara Jean Brown - Fusselman.
Barbara passed away on August 4, 2008. She lived in Tulsa from 1935-1989.
She moved to Seattle, Washington in 1989 and lived there until her passing
She and her good friend, Gene Lyon, worked in radio at T.U. in the late 1950s
and were both very active in the Tulsa Easter Pageant.
Mom was involved with TV, theater, and radio in Tulsa for many years, and
some of the best memories of her life were built there.
September 26 2008 at 23:05:32 Name: Brian Topic: KRMG Sign-off Song and Gaslight Dinner
Theatre Email: newhummer3 at yahoo.com Comments: You are correct...It is Moonlight Serenade by Glenn
Miller! Thanks for the reminder!
As to the Gaslight - I have lots of experience with them in the 70s and 80s.
Considering how many bars in town would serve a mixed drink without a BYOL
(if you knew the right place or the right owner), Gaslight really was one
of the better behaved. Not much liquor 'by the wink'. Food was always good,
if not great - and lots of good local folks with decent acting. I have good
memories there....too bad lots of these types of entertainment are now gone!
Speaking of pool - anyone ever get in a chance pool game down around Brookside
with Gailard Sartain (or should I say G.Ailard S. Artain), or any of the
old cronies from the Mazeppa hour. What a great time to grow up in Tulsa!
September 26 2008 at 11:03:18 Name: Jeff H Topic: Sign-off song and other bits Email: Riding the Super Loop Comments: Brian, I think the song you are talking about is
"Moonlight Serenade", indeed by Glenn Miller.
I can be no help with the "B Girl" mystery, but does anyone know about the
"Gaslite Club"? Was this a liquor-by-the-wink club or a theater group of
some kind? The Spotlight Theatre group, the name and logo seem familiar.
I also think the pool shot was taken at the Ramada Inn circa: early to mid
60s, and why is that woman staring at me?
The only thing I thought was good at the Fair was the destruction derby,
to a kid, it just did not get better than that.
September 26 2008 at 08:09:57 Name: Brian Topic: KRMG Closing Song Email: newhummer3 at yahoo dot
com Comments: When KRMG used to end their programming for the
day - I think about 10 or 11pm (in the 1960s), they played a song from a
big band - Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, anyway - I can't find it, and the
info escapes me.
My father has Alzheimer's, and doesn't remember much. However, he listened
to KRMG every day, and we this played most every evening in our home. He
was humming the song (amazing), and I want to find the track for him, and
some other big-band music.
HELP! Does anyone know which song I am speaking of? Thanks for the help.
Brian, there are several video sign-offs on the
Roy Byram, who was a broadcast engineer at KOTV from 1970-1974, told us:
"'Sunrise Serenade' was for sign-on and 'Moonlight Serenade' was sign-off.
Played the cart too many times for both shifts."
New coffee house near TU:
Collective has soul". Menu items are named for Tulsa lore of the past
and present, such as the Golden Driller, Zingo, and the Camelot.
September 21 2008 at 02:31:45 Name: roy lee Topic: The "B" Email:
royleeshouseatgeeeemaildotcommm Comments: Maybe it stands for "biscuits and gravy"?
September 20 2008 at 13:16:35 Name: roy lee Topic: That kid, Tom Hanford Email:
royleeshouseatgeemail.com Comments: I met that kid, Tom Hanford at Hale my first day
of 10th grade. He was already one of the best guitar players in Tulsa at
that time. Said he collected Beatle records. I asked what he had and he said
"everything." Normally a kid that age would be making that up. He wasn't
kidding. Heck of a guitar player then and now.
September 20 2008 at 03:25:39 Name: Tom Hanford Topic: UHF-"Rob Bowe" not pictured here.. Email: thanfordatcoxdotnet Comments: Sorry, Rob Bowe-the guy in the picture (captioned
"The Citizens of Tulsa, OK, find Rob Bowe w/ cursor)
w/the moustache, ponytail, grey shirt and blurred right arm is actually ME.
Standing immediately to my right is my dear departed friend Tom Keith (in
the light green shirt w/ glasses) whose association with Clu Gulager got
us on as extras.
Tom and I can also be seen at end of movie as "Big Louie's" car pulls up
to collect the money, and in the immediate background when Al presents "Stanley"
w/ his trophy.
Sorry if you thought for years this was you, but I still have not only a
copy of the Polaroid of my "audition" in that shirt but still have the actual
shirt! (also a "bootleg" video of rehearsals and outtakes from Stunts Unlimited,
who arranged the stunts---the owner's son was the "fire hose boy").
(p.s., Hello Richard Wilson!!)
Got that corrected, Tom, thanks. See stuntman Bob and son Adam Maras (Bob
is Yankee great Roger Maris' cousin) on the "UHF"
- Tulsa connections page.
I just saw Tom playing some great guitar and singing in Brady O at Sunset
Bar & Grill last week with my brother Alan, pix of which you can see
in the Photo/video briefcase under Flickr.
Location appears to be at the Tulsa Ramada Inn; compare postcard
Courtesy of the Beryl Ford Collection/Rotary Club of Tulsa,
Tulsa City-County Library & Tulsa Historical Society
Tulsa Ramada Inn
September 17 2008 at 22:30:23 Name: Terri Topic: Beverly's Pool & Dutch's Party
Barn Comments: I sure remember outings to Beverly's Pool as
a youngster in the late 50s - early 60s.
No one else in my family is able to recall Beverly's, but I remember it being
a nice clean uncrowded neighborhood pool.
I've wracked my brain for years trying to place exactly where it was. Seems
to me if you stand in the theater parking lot (north side of what will always
be Southroads Mall to me), the pool was a stone's throw to the north. There
was another pool on the southeast side of what used to be Southland.
Dutch's was loads of fun too. It was the happening place for preteens and
teens. Up until 15 years ago or so there were remnants of concrete picnic
tables and pads. Now it has become home to a church (?), parking lot and
September 17 2008 at 20:42:32 Name: Michael D. Trout Topic: 1960s "High Flight" Email: michaeldtrout at earthlink
dot net Comments: For those who care, the aircraft shown in the
1960s version of "High Flight" is a Lockheed F-104
Starfighter, a spectacular but ultimately disappointing U.S. Air Force jet
The F-104 was designed after U.S. pilots in the Korean War complained about
how the lightweight MiG-15 seemed to have better performance than their F-86
Sabres. Pushed by Lockheed as a "missile with a man in it," the F-104 was
intended to be very small and lightweight with a concentration on speed above
The F-104 certainly achieved its initial goal--it was the first aircraft
that could cruise at Mach 2. It also had an astounding climb rate--but it
handled like a "milk truck," according to its pilots. Its tiny size meant
it had very short range and limited weapons, and its revolutionary design
meant the F-104 required an inordinate amount of maintenance.
Although its exotic appearance was popular with both pilots and public, the
F-104 was tricky to fly and far too many were lost in crashes.
The U.S. Air Force operated the F-104 for only nine years (1958 to 1967),
but the Air National Guard kept the plane for eight more.
Also, the F-104 proved somewhat popular with other nations, particularly
West Germany, Italy, and Canada, who built many of their own and operated
them for quite a few years. Even so, the West German Luftwaffe was so plagued
by F-104 crashes that a German joke held that the best way to get an F-104
was to buy a patch of land and wait.
For those who may not know, the famous poem "High Flight" was written by
Royal Canadian Air Force pilot John Gillespie Magee, Jr., in 1941, a few
months before he was killed when his Spitfire collided with another plane
September 17 2008 at 15:24:12 Name: Beverly Topic: Beverly Swimming Pool Comments: Does anyone remember a swimming pool on the
southeast corner of 41st and Yale?
A friend has told me about this, but I can't remember anything before Southland.
She said the pool was owned by the Dutch family who later owned Dutch's Party
Barn. She's not sure of the correct of the name. We were just wondering if
anyone remembers either of those places.
September 13 2008 at 21:33:56 Name: David Perkins Topic: KTOW radio, 1967 Email: email@example.com Comments: I was just surfing the net and was trying to remember
exactly where KTOW was in Sand Springs. I lived in Tulsa and was the morning
man and would drive through the oil refineries on the way to the station.
Every morning I'd try to hold my breath, but about halfway there I'd begin
to gag on the smell.
Anyway as I remember, Paul Cannon was the PD and did the afternoon drive
time. We played good old country music. I left to come to my hometown of
Fort Worth on KBUY and was told later that when the ratings came out Paul
was number one in the afternoons and I got number one in the mornings. Guess
if I'd known that I'd have stuck around a little longer.
I did enjoy my time at KTOW and in Tulsa. Retired now, I do a little preaching
here and there.
September 13 2008 at 08:58:22 Name: Randy Kindy Topic: Mel Root Email: rkindy-at-mac-dot-com Comments: Many media people who come here will remember Mel
Root, a nice guy who worked as a Tulsa World photographer for a couple of
decades, then ran a photo business in the years since. Mel died this past
Wednesday. No detailed obit yet in the paper, just the thumbnail death notice.
In checking the Tulsa World archive, I found an article from this past May
which recounts a dream vacation he took this year after learning he had cancer.
Here's the link:
boat trip offers a chance to reflect", 5/25/2008.
September 12 2008 at 18:51:01 Name: Erick Topic: Scottish Rite Building Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Comments: A small aside regarding the mention (in the previous
groupblog) of the old Scottish Rite Building just off I-44 and Sheridan...
I determined some time ago (because I have no life) that the brief film of
the December 5, 1975 east Tulsa tornado was shot from the parking lot of
that very building. For those interested, that small bit of film can be located
on YouTube, I believe...
Here it is. Check out the electrical explosions.
September 12 2008 at 01:11:54 Name: Webmaster Topic: "Burn After Reading"
Gary Chew just reviewed "Burn After Reading",
the new Coen brothers movie with Brad Pitt, Frances McDormand, George Clooney
and John Malkovich. It looks like a really funny one.
He will talk about it on the Friday KVMR
evening news at about 8:50 pm Tulsa time. He was on the
Peter B. Collins show Thursday.
The show is downloadable from the archive; Gary appears at 2 hrs, 54 minutes
September 10 2008 at 23:25:55 Name: Rick Brashear Topic: Mr. Zing and Tuffy Song Comments: Deneice, it was caused by the mescaline your
grow into eleplatypotumuses while she did housework.
Actually, I do remember the song but the title escapes me. I guess I was
too busy watching my carpet grow into asparagus stalks with Rodney Dangerfield's
face on them. :)~
September 10 2008 at 22:17:38 Name: Deneice Crow Topic: Mr. Zing and Tuffy Email: email@example.com Comments: My sister and I seem to be the only ones to remember
this. Actually, we don't remember too clearly, but it's driving us nuts,
Mr. Zing sang a song sometimes that included these words... and one ancestor
was a platypus...; and ... he's part hippopotumus and el-e-phant...
During this song, we remember seeing footprints on the floor, but it never
showed the animal. Can anyone help solve this mystery for us?
September 10 2008 at 20:38:42 Name: Mike Bruchas Topic: Wolf Camera/WGN/Brinkley's book Comments: The job market is bad up here in Chicago and
I am working part time in a Wolf Camera chain store. Learned yesterday that
my manager, Anthony, used to shoot publicity stills for some WGN radio shows.
And hang out there some nights.
One night a producer became very ill and asked Anthony to try to cover the
phones till relief arrived. He did fine. He started filling in on the Ed
Schwartz show as producer. He kept his day job managing camera shops.
The current WGN radio overnight team (I forget their names!) had him as fill-in
producer and 2 or 3 times a year put him on talking about new cameras and
Or talking about planning Florida vacations and Disneyland visits, his ex-wife
lives there and he could almost be a tour planner for that neck of the woods.
I asked why he didn't stay on for a staff job at WGN and he said, "They offered
me full-time producing work, but I made more money managing a camera store!".
Well, neither of us will be rich, working in a chain camera store!
David Brinkley's "Washington Goes To War" is my all-time fave of Washington,
DC books. I had given my initial copy away and after Brinkley died, they
were in short supply then went out of print. I had to buy another copy from
a used dealer on Amazon.com. Try to read it! It's great!!
September 10 2008 at 20:36:53 Name: Michael D. Trout Topic: WWII rationing Email: michaeldtrout at earthlink
dot net Comments: David Brinkley's
Goes To War: The Extraordinary Story of the Transformation of a City and
a Nation (Knopf 1988) gives a lot of background to rationing. Brinkley
confirms that gasoline rationing was done to save rubber. There was plenty
of gasoline, but rubber supplies, both natural and synthetic, were very limited,
due to the Japanese seizure of the Dutch East Indies and other parts of Southeast
I have a "C" Mileage Ration sticker, the back of which reads "To Save Tires
Drive Under 35. Share your car. Check air pressure weekly. Stop, start, turn
slowly. Cross-switch tires regularly. Is This Trip REALLY Necessary?"
Brinkley also states that most scrap drives were for morale-building, not
for material. Often it took more effort to reclaim the scrap than it was
worth, so it was just stored. He claims that as late as the 1970s, there
were still a few U.S. government warehouses full of scrap aluminum (among
other things), collected during WWII and never used.
September 10 2008 at 20:15:28 Name: Michael D. Trout Topic: Bill Ryan Email: michaeldtrout at earthlink
dot net Comments: My good friend Jeff Ryan, son of Bill Ryan, asked
me to submit something about his dad. Jeff, who still lives in Tulsa, supplied
William Augustin Ryan was born in Tulsa 7 February 1921, in the "brand-new"
3-story St. John Hospital. His father was Catholic, his mother Episcopal
(from the Manget family of French Huguenot stock). He graduated from Tulsa
Central High School in 1939, where he was a friend of future Tulsa TV personality
Betty Boyd. He earned some college credits at the University of Michigan,
then joined the U.S. Army in August 1942. Like all good Oklahoma boys should,
Bill wound up in the 45th Infantry Division ("Thunderbirds"), where he trained
in North Africa.
Bill Ryan's first taste of combat was during the Allied invasion of Sicily,
where he went ashore on 1 July 1943. After the Allies took Sicily, the 45th
was in the thick of the invasion of Italy. Bill was wounded, recovered, and
rejoined the 45th in time for the invasion of the Italian port of Anzio.
A powerful German counterattack nearly pushed the Allies back into the sea,
but the 45th stubbornly held their ground and earned a new nickname: "The
Rock of Anzio." Bill Ryan received his second wound at Anzio.
After recovery, Bill Ryan was transferred to the 1st Infantry Division ("The
Big Red One") as an artillery forward observer. He went ashore with the second
assault wave at Omaha Beach, survived, and went on to fight his way across
France and into Germany. Bill was briefly captured by Waffen-SS troops before
they were scattered by the Japanese-American soldiers of the 442nd Regimental
Bill Ryan was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge, the Bronze Star, two Purple
Hearts, and the French Croix de Guerre. He was discharged in November 1945,
but continued to serve until 1949 in the Oklahoma Army National Guard as
a 2nd Lieutenant with the 160th Field Artillery Battalion in Tulsa. About
this time he changed his disliked middle name of Augustin to Michael. Also
in 1949, he finished college under the G.I. Bill, with a BA in Radio Production
at Tulsa University.
Moving to South Carolina, Bill worked from 1950 to 1952 for the American
Red Cross at the U.S. Marine Corps base in Parris Island. In 1952, he began
his radio career at stations in Beaufort, S.C. In 1954, in Sanford, N.C.,
Bill met his future wife Lorane Grotke.
Lorane was from the Buffalo, N.Y. area, and the couple soon moved there.
About 1955, Bill Ryan began working for WKBW radio in Buffalo. Among the
personalities he interviewed on air were former OSS director William "Wild
Bill" Donovan (a Buffalo native), and Sammy Davis, Jr.
During one WKBW newscast, Bill Ryan was reading copy on air when a staffer
began frantically waving from the control room, indicating that a hot bulletin
was coming in. Another staffer raced into the studio with the copy in hand,
only to slip on the newly-waxed floor. Falling onto his back, the man slid
under the table where Bill was sitting. As he slid by, he handed the copy
up to Bill, who snatched the copy and began reading without missing a beat,
while the man on the floor slid by and crashed into the wall.
In 1957, Bill Ryan returned to Oklahoma for good. He began working at Tulsa's
KVOO radio at the studios on South Peoria. His frequent co-workers were Jay
Jones and Johnny Ryan (no relation). Along with his extensive radio work
at KVOO, Bill had some limited assignments at KVOO television, in news and
various entertainment programs.
Back in the days when local television stations exerted much control over
programming, KVOO once hosted a "submarine movie" weekend. Staffers built
a reasonable-looking submarine periscope and hung it from the ceiling down
in KVOO's boiler room full of pipes, gauges, and valves. Bill Ryan and a
few others donned plain khaki shirts and slacks similar to that of the U.S.
Navy's World War II submarine crews, and portrayed the part of submariners
at war while KVOO cameras rolled. These clips were used to introduce the
movies KVOO aired that weekend.
Bill Ryan was well-known for the Kaleidoscope radio show on KVOO, which he
co-hosted with Jay Jones. An on-air conversation on 6 June 1957 went like
Bill Ryan: "Where were you on June 6, 1944, Jay?"
Jay Jones: "I was in the hospital, cheering them on! [Jay had lost both legs
at Anzio.] Where were you, Bill?"
Bill: [In a dry, matter-of-fact voice] "I was on a landing barge, with
seasickness compounded by fear!"
About that particular radio conversation, Bill's son Jeff says it "got quite
a favorable, humorous response in and around Tulsa."
Bill and Lorane had four children: Jeffrey (born 1956, currently living in
Tulsa); Stephanie (born 1957, currently living in Broken Arrow); David (born
1958, currently living in Friday Harbor, Wash.); and Matthew (born 1961,
currently living in Tulsa). Lorane was an elementary school teacher for many
years, as well as a school librarian, for the Tulsa Public Schools. She taught
in Mitchell, Alcott, and Lanier Elementary Schools.
Bill Ryan left KVOO in 1964, moving to KRMG for a couple of years. He then
worked at a radio station in Vinita from 1967 to 1968, then in Claremore
at KWPR from 1969 to 1970. For the next three years he worked in hotels in
downtown Tulsa. Bill Ryan died of congestive heart failure on 2 December
We appreciate you telling us the story of this American hero and Tulsa
September 10 2008 at 10:13:12 Name: Frank Morrow Topic: Durante Comments: The Durante equivalent to "What a revoltin'
development" was "a catastastroke!"
September 08 2008 at 00:07:41 Name: Rick Brashear Topic: WWII scrap drives
Comments: Jim, it was me who told about the guns being buried
As you pointed out about there being no shortage of gasoline in America,
the reason it was rationed was because of a rubber shortage. The Japanese
controlled the Asian rubber supplies we had been using, so that only left
Brazil to supply us. ALL of the jeep tires and many of the other military
tires made during WWII were synthetic (a trick we learned from the Germans
Special gaskets, aircraft oxygen masks, gas masks, medical equipment, rubber
stamps for office use, glues...etc, needed real rubber, so they took priority.
Gasoline was rationed to keep people from wearing out their tires which contained
September 07 2008 at 15:33:55 Name: Jim Cripps Topic: Various
Comments: "What a revoltin' development this is", didn't Sylvester
the cat say that too?
Don LaFontaine, surely irreplaceable.
I had, for my first radio, one of those cubes that you could put pictures
into. It was all the rage back then. My second transistor radio was all white
plastic, with a black band between the front and back. I accidentally left
it outside during a rain, and it didn't work for a few years. What a long
drought for music. KELi was certainly my fav.
September 07 2008 at 11:47:44 Name: Barry Robb Topic: Radio & Coffee Email:
cda&coffee@msn&.com Comments: I used to work in the Tulsa market in the mid 70s-
early 80s. I did PM drive on KVOO and then later on KTFX. Then I got married
and had to finally make a living... but.. recently...
I started working with Mapelton Communications in May of this year. I just
missed the business too much. They purchased Citadel's Spokane cluster of
stations last year in that deal Citadel made with the affiliate CBS stations.
I am doing sub work for them. I'm their "utility" guy I guess. I anchor the
AM news block for KJRB when Larry Weir wants off as well as sub-in for any
or their seven stations as announcer. I also have the weekend gig for "Spokane's
Country 93.7 The Cat".
I also own the Coeur d'Alene Coffee Roasting Co. Our coffees are distributed
by Sysco Foods of Spokane. You can find some of what we have at.
I am in the process of building this site, but our biggest sellers are available
Aren't you glad you asked?
September 06 2008 at 23:40:42 Name: Jim Ruddle Topic: WWII Drives, etc. Comments: Frank Morrow noted that the Brits were deficient
in scrap conversion and another (sorry, I don't remember who) related that
Americans sent guns to England which were buried. About that I can't comment.
I do recall, however, that in his memoirs, Harold Ickes, father of Hillary's
pal, and who had headed the War Production Board, or one of those bureaucracies
of the day said that despite the fact that Americans were subjected to gasoline
rationing and a 35-mile-an-hour speed limit, there was never a shortage of
gasoline in this country, but that transporting it was the problem. Hence,
some old timers may recall, the "big inch" pipeline that was started during
the war but not completed until after.
September 06 2008 at 08:15:20 Name: Webmaster Topic: Previous GroupBlog summary Comments: