440: Satisfaction - In depth
Bill Wippel remembers:

While at KUTI, Yakima, winter of 1955-56: One cold day (-25) mice started to invade the xmtr. Their tails would get caught in the mercury vapor tubes, throwing us off the air. We put in mouse traps. The xmtr was right next to board (no glass between). While reading a funeral home Christmas greeting, a mouse trap went off, de-capitationing a vermin. I began to laugh and had to tell listeners what was going on (it's what my high school radio teacher Ms. Ruth Argall told me to do). 45 minutes later dozens of cars were lined up in front of the station, listeners offering their cats to chase the mice to keep the station on the air!

While owner of KOFE, Pullman, WA, 1959-64: Created character called "Lorenzo Toad", popular with WSU and IU students, "a former nuclear physist, while lost in the arctic, willed his frozen assets to 'Palouse U' (WSU) and 'Panhandle Tech' (Idaho U). 820 episodes on local situations and characters. Did most of the voices. Also did "Bed Pushing Contest" betweem WSU and UI studnets. Our competition, KRPL, used to say on the air, "we don't run down at sundown, referring to our daytime signal. We said, "When daytime turn to dark blue, we watch TV don't you?" Our station breaks were sold to Folger's "When I say KOFE, I mean Folgers." It was a great time of service to the community. The town of Pullman needed new Christmas decorations. I turned the station over to the chamber of commerce for one day. In 1963 they raised $4,000 in revenue for that day, more than I grossed in a month! The local bank bought the spot for Seattle First (now Bank of America) and said, "see that sign out in front of Sea-First, that's not a temperture guage that's their rate of interest!" (The broadcast was in July when the temp reached well above 80 degrees). Meanwhile Sea-First bought the local banks spot and said, "See that clock out front of the bank? That's because inside they won't give you time of day!" I miss this kind radio today. It's all so 'generic'. I wish I had my own station again in a small community. That was the highlight of my career.

While at KIXI, Seattle, news beat reporter, working with Don Riley, Martin Tobin, Dave Ballard, Wally Nelskog. Won several journalism awards for King County Courthouse scandal. Had my life threatened by one of the officials I investigated.

When I was at KIRO, Seattle (I had been in TV news for 5 years, taking a hiatus from radio and missing it terribly) started as street reporter, became Director of News and Programming in 6 months. Station went from #8 to #1. Hired Dave Ross, who has become an instition in Seattle, now in his 25th year at the station and his show is #1.


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