Tuesday, November 19, 2013

We Interrupt This Broadcast...

It's probably not a stretch to say that November 22, 1963 began like most other days at WHBC/1480 in Canton. On-air staff, salesmen, management figures and other employees likely showed up for work in the morning like they had every day of their career and went about their business. It's also fair to say that they, along with Americans everywhere, couldn't have foreseen the day's events in Dallas, Texas that lead to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Coverage of the unfortunate event interrupted WHBC's "B-Line" program, hosted by longtime personalities Bill Karrenbauer and Bob Krahling. In this unscoped aircheck made by Tom Emmons, Karrenbauer and Krahling are interviewing Hoover-Price Planetarium director Jeanne Emmons. Roughly 25 minutes into the recording, Karrenbauer interrupts the interview, leading in to a news bulletin from ABC Radio at about 1:42 p.m. Eastern Time. (Given the timeline of ABC's coverage, it appears that an earlier bulletin was not aired by WHBC.) After the update, there's a brief return to regular programming. One senses that the news disturbs Krahling, who nevertheless is professional in his brief assessment of the situation. The remaining 20 minutes of the aircheck is ABC's coverage, during which one hears an unconfirmed report that the president is dead.

Special thanks to WHBC chief engineer Dale Lamm and to Jason Stroll for making the aircheck available to NEO Airchecks.