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Radio's Love for Ron Ruth Continues to Flow in

11-19-13

After our story about the passing of Ron Ruth Monday, we've heard from so many readers about how Ron touched their lives in a positive way. The comments are from large, medium and small market broadcasters, from all over the country. If you hadn't had a chance to read them, please take a moment to scroll through a few pages of them here. They are posted below the original story. Ron is pictured here with Carl Butrum during a trip to Spain (picture courtesy Amy Meredith).

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11-15-13

One of radio's giants, Ron Ruth, passed away this past weekend, at the age of 75. A familiar and beloved figure, Ron spent 19 years at the Radio Advertising Bureau as EVP of stations until 2011 when he left to become an outside consultant for the trade group.

His stint at the RAB followed a successful radio career that started on the programming side in San Antonio. Making his way to Boston, Ruth ended up sharing a small apartment with two other aspiring jocks, Jack Burns and George Carlin. "I soon realized I had no talent for being on-air, so I talked the GM into letting me sort of get into sales."
 
Eventually, the road led to New York and WOR. As Ruth related in a 2005 R&R interview, "Then they moved me to New York to this thing called WOR-FM. It was an amazing rocket ride and going absolutely nuts as the No. 1 FM in the country. I decided to move to Europe. I took my wife at the time and our two young children and packed everything into six boxes and four suitcases and went off to London. We bought a van and struck out."

"Fast-forward 18 months, and I got a call from San Juan Racing. They tracked me down because of my supposed expertise in classical music and wanted me to go to WTMI/Miami, which I agreed to do. I was there about a year, and Storz contacted me to go over to WQAM, which was No. 1 in Miami at the time. I was there about four or five years and then went to Hawaii, where I got into ownership."

Longtime friend George Hyde worked with Ruth at the RAB for many years. "Ron was a great friend to anyone in the Radio industry. He had an easy manner that made everyone around him feel important. There are thousands of broadcasters today who mourn his passing not only with a tear, but with a smile in remembrance of his effervescent personality and how he made them feel."
 
And in a statement from the Radio Advertising Bureau, "It is with a sad and heavy heart that the RAB announces the passing of our beloved colleague and Radio industry favorite, Ron Ruth. Ron succumbed to cardiac arrest early Saturday morning after battling health issues the last two months. Ron was at the helm of the RAB Membership team for twenty-plus years."

Funeral arrangements are pending.




(2/5/2014 10:45:02 AM)
Just heard about the passing of my dear friend Ron Ruth. What a great guy. We worked together at McLendon's WYSL in Buffalo. He introduced me to what became my wife several months after he dated her sister. If anyone ever asks: "What is Radio" - the answer is Ron Ruth.

- Art Wabder
(12/2/2013 8:44:26 PM)
Lots of miles out there on the radio highway since Ron and I worked at McLendon in the late 60s. What a really great guy! STAN WEBB

- Stan Webb
(11/27/2013 7:43:10 PM)
If half of life is indeed just showing up, then Ron was a scratch player. He took it to an art form, made it his trademark. But beyond "just showing up", he became radio's Johnny Appleseed of joy, spreading goodwill and great humor wherever he went. For that and much more, we gave him our love and respect. So as we raise a glass to this special guy and close pal, let's keep a place in our hearts for him. He'll always be there.

- Bill Clark
(11/24/2013 10:53:10 PM)
I was shocked and saddened by Ron's untimely demise. While I had never laid eyes on him till I hit Miami, we had something in common. We both worked for Robert E. Eastman & Company, with Frank Boyle. I was on the air at WTRX in Flint & Ron worked at KAFY in Bakersfield. Every onece in a while I'd speak with him "long distance" about a promotion or two. He was always happy to help. Then in Miami, we met and to this day, I've NEVER heard a bad word spoken about Ron. RIP, friend.

- Pat Appleson
(11/22/2013 3:15:54 PM)
"Uncle Ron" as we always referred to him was a tremendous person, mentor and friend. In all of the time I spent with him over the last 20+ years he was exactly how everyone has described. Warm, wonderful, quick with a joke and even more memorable by his willingness to always help, no matter the situation. No words can adequately describe the impact you have had with everyone you came in contact with. You will be greatly missed and long remembered! Thanks for being you!

- Todd Fries

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