I have had three "radio heroes" in my life.  One of them died today.

The first radio hero I had was a DJ named Paul Berlin.  He was a mainstay on Houston radio for more than six decades.  I lived in Houston from 1979 to 1984.  I actually was a truck driver (small truck;  not a semi).  Hard to believe, isn't it.  I listened to Paul Berlin every day on KQUE without fail.  He played the older type of music that I grew up with listening to my father's band in Sidney; Sinatra, Ella, Mel Torme, the doo wop groups, Tony Bennett, etc.  Pop stuff.  I loved it.  He had a way of making a song into a story. Either the song was the preamble to his story or it was the punctuation mark to his story. Either way he was a wizard.  I first dreamed of going into radio while listening to Paul Berlin in my truck on those hot Houston afternoons.  Sounded like a pretty cool job.  Paul Berlin is still on the air and is now in his mid-80s.

My second hero was Oneonta's own Paul Berlin, Joe Campbell.  I listened to the "Grand Old Man of Radio" long before I began working with him in 1989.  I enjoyed every day with Joe, and marveled at the sheer joy he received out of playing "his kind of music."  Joe always told me "you can't go wrong when you are dealing with memories." He is of course a legend. And a role model.  And was my second radio hero.  Joe is hale and hearty and still lives in Oneonta.

My third radio hero was Don Weeks of WGY in Schenectady.  He was on the air doing mornings in the Capital District for 30 years.  He died today at the age of 76.

Don was cheery, very funny, quick on his feet, an easy communicator, clever and didn't take himself too seriously.  He was never offensive.  Always interested and always interesting.  I listened to Don whenever I could.  I absolutely idolized him and his style of friendly conversational radio, and he knew it.  I actually met him a couple of times and he interviewed me on his radio show 3 times about my books.  We exchanged several friendly emails over the years and he knew how I felt about him.  He was embarrassed at the praise I gave him.  He was a real legend.

I will miss my radio hero from WGY in Schenectady.  I have been on the air at WDOS for 26 years now.  A baby in the above group.  I admired them all.  Loved their work.  And thank them.

Rest in peace, "Uncle Don."