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ARRL Special Bulletin ARLX007 (1999)

ARLX007 Radio Legend Jean Shepherd, K2ORS, SK

QST de W1AW  
Special Bulletin 7  ARLX007
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  October 18, 1999
To all radio amateurs 

ARLX007 Radio Legend Jean Shepherd, K2ORS, SK

Radio broadcasting legend Jean Shepherd, K2ORS, died October 16. He
was 78. News reports say Shepherd died in a hospital near his home
in Sanibel Island, Florida.

One of the original radio "talkers," Shepherd gained a loyal
following of overnight listeners during his more than two-decade
tenure at powerful WOR in New York during the 1950s, 60s and early

Shepherd remained active on HF SSB and occasionally on 2-meter FM. A
former ARRL member, he did some hamming from his boat in Florida in
recent years.

On the air, "Shep" worked without a script or reliance on telephone
callers spinning yarns--typically with a sardonic edge--often based
on his boyhood years in Hammond, Indiana, and his time in the Army
and occasionally mentioning ham radio. Among the characters he
created was alter ego Ralphie Parker, who appeared in his 1983 film
classic "A Christmas Story," which he wrote and narrated.

Shepherd also penned numerous articles and several books, including
In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash in 1966 and Wanda Hickey's
Night of Golden Memories in 1971. He also produced the TV programs
Jean Shepherd's America and Shepherds's Pie for PBS, as well as
several PBS American Playhouse productions, including The Phantom of
the Open Hearth and The Great American Fourth of July and Other

His third wife, Leigh, died last year, and he had no survivors.

"He captivated a generation with his stories," said vintage radio
buff John Dilks, K2TQN. "He is survived by Schwartz, Flick, Bruner
and all of the other wonderful characters he created."

For detailed information on Jean Shepherd, visit or


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