Radio Rituals


Stan sent the word out on Sunday afternoon about your diagnosis. All I could think was, "What a revoltin' development this is!"  Well, that’s not exactly all that I thought, but at least it leaves out the expletives.

As soon as I heard the news, I wrote to everyone I'm still in contact with from the years at KOMO and the greetings and stories have been flooding in.
I have to tell you that even after all these years since my departure from KOMO, I’ve never been able to adjust my sleep/wake cycle to coincide with the rest of the world. 
I'm typically still awake through the night and as 4:30 in the morning approaches I still go through the process (mentally) of starting to prepare the studio for KOMO’s First Edition, cueing up Paul Harvey’s News and Comment for you to play at 5:30-5:35, pulling the carts for the news program, cleaning off the console, clearing away the newspapers, turning down all the police scanner monitors, pulling all the carts for the spots during your show, stacking them all up neatly, hour-by-hour, unplugging the cord on the handset of the phone and straightening out any kinks in it, so that everything would be spotless and in perfect order before your arrival. The pace of everything quickened at 4:30 in preparation for your arrival just an hour away.  You always came in chipper and cheerful, never angry or in a huff, always friendly, and positive.
I relive that routine almost every night/day.  Those were the greatest years of my life.  It was a privilege to be the 'warm up act' for your show.  You always treated me so graciously.
I remember the thrill of getting to take the Cadillac out and about to give away Husky letterman jackets and calling in to report on my location during your show. Everywhere from the parking lot at Southcenter all the way over to Gig Harbor. You made everything special. You made everyone feel special.
The last time I saw you in person was when you were doing a remote at The Ram Pub, in Lakewood, years ago.  I started bawling my head off and I know that was awkward.  I’m sorry I couldn’t keep myself together better than that.  I had just missed you so much!
Every night my husband and I watch Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy and almost inevitably spots will come on with either your voice or Eric McKaig’s voice on them.  I always say to Charles, "That’s Larry!"  or "That’s Eric!"  Whenever I hear you I have marveled at how good, how smooth you sound even after all these years.  You’ve never been in better form.  Your voice shows no aging at all.  That’s why this news is so horrific, such a shocker, and it leaves me/us all feeling bewildered and helpless.
Years ago you told a story about hard times when you were a child, and how things seemed so bleak, but that your dad during that winter had reassured the family that, "Come spring…"  Yes, "come spring" everything was going to better. Over the years I’ve battled through bouts of depression and I want you to know that I often harken back to that story and that "Come spring…" things would turn around.  That has been a rock that I have clung to countless times.  Just that simple phrase, "Come spring…"  It is always with me and it sustains me.
Another gem that inspired me so much and has for all of the years in between was the joy that you expressed in simply being among the chosen to have a place to get up and go to, more specifically, a J-O-B to go to every day.  That, too, has carried me through the roughest times over the years.  Finding it a joy and a privilege just to be …
Loving thoughts and prayers…with more on the way!
Jaynie Dillon Jones