Radio hostLuther Masingill

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On New Year’s Eve in 1940, Masingill, then 18 years old, started work at a brand new radio station that went on the air that day: WDEF in Chattanooga, Tenn. He was given a specific morning time slot for his show, which included reporting on the news. During the noon news, he would report on lost pets. On April 25, 1954, WDEF expanded to TV, too, and Masingill was the person to “sign on” for its first broadcast. He also worked at WDEF-FM. He took time off to go overseas as a military reporter during World War II, but otherwise worked for WDEF for his entire career, covering everything from the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. And he stayed on the air for 74 years, making him the longest-serving radio show host in radio history. Masingill is a member of the National Radio Hall of Fame and the Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame, and a National Marconi award winner. He was on the air — in his original time slot — until he died on October 19. He was 92.

From This is True for 19 October 2014