Frank X. Feller
Broadcast Pioneers member Frank X. Feller slipped quietly into the midst of the Roaring Twenties on Tuesday, March 30, 1926, as another infant, Radio Broadcasting, was announcing its presence in tones loud and clear. Frank held forth in Jersey City, NJ; Radio was all the rage in all 48 states. The two became bosom buddies from the get-go.
Both were hit with the reality of, and would grow up in, the Great Depression of the '30s. Radio informed and entertained a struggling nation; Frank, when not tuned into the Red Network or the Blue Network, was learning his ABCs and more from the nuns at St. Paul's grammar school.
1939 brought World War II to Europe, and Radio brought it to every home in America. 1939 took Frank to St. Peter's Prep in Jersey City and four years of Jesuit training.
1943 saw Frank, age 17, enlist in the U.S. Army. In 1946, after serving as a medic in the ETO, Corporal Frank became a college boy at Syracuse University. He graduated with an AB degree in 1949, majoring in English with a broadcasting minor.
Frank's wartime dream to be an Air Corps pilot wasn't to be. In 1949, it was back to his old buddy Broadcasting and his true ambition to be a radio announcer. And so it started at WVPO in Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania.
The 1950s found Frank announcing in North Carolina, North Jersey, and Trenton. In February 1963, Frank becomes a Wibbage Good Guy at WIBG in Philadelphia.
(Left to right) Hy Lit, Frank X. Feller, Joe Niagara, Bill Wright, Sr.
Jerry Stevens, Rich Rumer (manager of the Spectrum) & Dean Tyler
at the WIBG Reunion at the Spectrum in Philadelphia
To the millions of teenagers and their parents growing up in the Delaware Valley during the sixties, he was "Frank X. Feller" who brought warmth and wit to Radio 99 every weeknight from 10 pm until 2 am.
The 1970s saw Frank as the first employee of a new station, WYSP, as program director, later to be general manager. In the early 1980s that station was sold and Frank returned to his first love, the microphone, as a talk show host on WWDB. During that time, Frank was active in our organization, the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia, becoming our 19th president in 1981-82. His active broadcasting career ended in forced retirement in 1990.
His announcing co-love, writing, had continued all through the years and included six top-selling children's albums, comedy records, and magazine pieces.
2006 was spent by Frank writing his 400-page book, A Letter from Dad, his life story written for his children and grandchildren, relatives and friends. He and his wife published it privately. They all seem to like it a lot.
The former New York Giants fan lives in Wayne, Pennsylvania, with his editor and wife, Valerie. Both are insane Eagles and Phillies fans. With the TV on mute, the old announcer has the Radio on full steam.
From the official archives of the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia
Photos originally donated by Broadcast Pioneers member Bill Wright, Sr.
© 2008, Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia
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