Ontario, Hamilton/Niagara Area
CKOC-AM, Hamilton, Bell Media
CKOC radio hit the airwaves on May 1. A speech broadcast by Mayor Coppley officially launched the station a week later. Studios were set up in the Windsor Hotel on the north-west corner of King William and John Streets...across the street from Wentworth Auto.
In the early going, CKOC was on the air daily from noon to 1:00 p.m. and from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. Programming consisted of news, community events, pre-recorded music and a weekly church broadcast. Later in the year, Billy Stewart and his Melody Boys entertained listeners between 7:30 and 8:30 p.m.
CKOC was launched principally to offer a radio program service which, together with other stations would help to provide an incentive for people to buy radio receivers from Wentworth stock. This was a very common reason for the establishment of many radio stations across Canada in the 1920's.
Power was increased from five to 10 watts and by the end of the year CKOC was on 410 meters with 20 watts of power, and sharing air-time and frequency with CFCU and CHCS.
Pioneering radio engineer Les Horton joined the staff of CKOC shortly after it opened. He mentioned years later that when a customer came in to Ontario Cycle (Wentworth Radio & Supply) for a demonstration of radio, Les would often have to go upstairs, turn on the transmitter and play the piano! The "OC" in the call letters actually represented Ontario Cycle.
CKOC was growing and the Windsor Hotel facility was no longer large enough. The station moved to the Lister Building at James and King William and then to the eleventh floor of the Royal Connaught Hotel.
CKOC increased power on 880 kHz to 100 watts, sharing time with CHML, and leasing time to CHCS.
CKTB St. Catharines opened as a phantom station, using CKOC's facilities.
Bill Guild started in radio as a continuity writer at CKOC. Steve Douglas joined CKOC from WSYR in Syracuse.
CKOC purchased room in the Wentworth Building (above Wentworth Radio) at 32 John Street North (north-east corner of King William and John).
The corporate name changed to Wentworth Broadcasting Co.
CKOC became an affiliate of the new CBC network.
Jack Thompson started his radio career at CKOC.
Howard Caine became a full-time CKOC staffer in the summer. Jack Thompson left CKOC for the CKCL Toronto announce staff on March 1.
William Guild, who had been in charge of continuity at CKOC, was named production manager. Phil Clayton, formerly of CKCR Kitchener, joined the announce staff at CKOC. Dave Robbins, former newspaper man, joined CKOC as news editor and publicity director. T. O. Wiklund left CKOC for the CBC. Robert Morrison joined the announcing staff from CKY in Winnipeg. Frank (Bud) Lynch left CKOC for the announce staff at CKLW Windsor. Fenwick Job joined CKOC's production staff. He had been an announcer at WHLS in Port Huron, Michigan. Norman Choate joined CKOC's announce staff.
New studios were opened November 15 by CKOC, with Mayor William Morrison officiating. Canadian Marconi and RCA equipment were installed. Manager M. V. Chestnut was host to about 500 guests in the new main studio during a 90 minute special program, aired over the CBC. Among those on hand were Harry Sedgwick and Lloyd Moore of CFRB, Joseph Sedwick and Arthur Evans of the C.A.B., Jack Radford and Dick Claringbull of the CBC.
CKOC became a subscriber of the British United Press news service.
Gordon Anderson, formerly general manager of CKOC and the staff of CKLW, joined the executive staff of Vi-Tone Sales Ltd. in Hamilton. Manager M. V. Chestnut ws on loan to CKWX Vancouver.
The Sifton family acquired a 50% interest in CKOC.
To meet growing demands for network time during the evenings, largely due to the war, the CBC set up a second network for commercial sponsorship. The network's first sponsor (on an experimental basis) was the Gillette Safety Razor Co. The Mutual Broadcasting System originated boxing events for 26 Canadian stations through the CBC, plus the MBS affiliate - CKLW Windsor. The second newtwork had 23 Canadian stations with alternative stations in Montreal to meet local conditions there. The new network would operate only after 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Over the past year, private stations had been anxious to have such a network - outside of CBC control. However, under the Radio Act, the CBC had full control over all networks in the country. It was felt that a full second network with full day and night programming was not feasible or economically possible at this time. CBC-owned stations affiliated with the new network: CBK Watrous, CBA Sackville and CBY Toronto. Privately-owned stations affiliated with the new network were: CJOR Vancouver, CHWK Chilliwack, CFCN Calgary, CFRN Edmonton, CJRM Regina, CJGX Yorkton, CJRC Winnipeg, CKCA Kenora, CJIC Sault Ste Marie, CKOC Hamilton, CKTB St. Catherines, CFPL Londun, CFCO Chatham, CKLW Windsor, CKCR Kitchener, CKCO Ottawa, CFCF or CHLP Montreal, CHLT Sherbooke, CKNB Campbellton, and CJLS Yarmouth.
W.T. Cranston, sales manager of CKOC, was named manager of the station, succeeding M.V. Chestnut, who took a position with All-Canada Radio Facilities Ltd. in Toronto. W.M. Guild of the sales staff became sales manager while W.A. Speers, assistant manager with CKCK Regina, moved east to take a similar position with CKOC. All changes were effective August 1.
Les Donaldson was moved from CKOC's transmitter to the operator's desk. Don MacMillan was hired to look after the transmitter. Former news editor and publicity man, Dave Robbins, was now with RCA. Sports writer and commentator Perce LeSueur was no doing news. Lloyd Westmoreland was now handling publicity and merchandising.
Lou Dixon of All Canada's transcription department was moved from Toronto to Hamilton, to work in CKOC's merchandising department. M.V. Chestnut, CKOC's former manager, and latterly in All Canada's Toronto office, left March 31 to manage CJVI in Victoria.
W.A. "Bill" Cranston was CKOC's manager.
Promotion director Lloyd Westmoreland joined the RCAF at the end of July.
Former CKOC manager Gordon Anderson was now with the Ontario region of Selective Service.
CKOC announced plans to increase power to 5,000 watts in 1945.
In January, G. Norris MacKenzie joined the CKOC sales staff from CKWX Vancouver where he had been continuity editor. Roly Koster joined CKOC.
Bob Amos was continuity editor. W.T. Cranston was manager and W.M. Guild was commercial manager. Lloyd Westmoreland returned to CKOC as promotion manager. He had been serving with the RCAF. G. Norris MacKenzie left CKOC for All-Canada Radio Facilities. Late in the year, A.N. Todd, former chief operator of CKOC, returned to the station after three years in the navy. He would now be chief production engineer. Frank Kirton also returned to CKOC. He had been with the RCAF. Kirton took over the transcription and record library.
Late in the year, the sod was turned for CKOC's new 5,000 watt transmitter site. On hand for the event: Les Horton (chief engineer), Bill Cranston (manager), Lyman Potts (production manager), Starfleet Township Reeve Millmine and Hamilton Mayor Sam Lawrence.
Dave Robbins was a news editor. A.O. (Orrin) Botsford took over as CKOC's commercial sales manager after spending four years on the sales staff of CKRC Winnipeg. Bud Debow was an announcer at CKOC. Ron Cook was sports editor.
CKOC was expecting to increase power to 5,000 watts on January 1, 1947. In December of '46, the new transmitter was complete and chief engineer Les Horton was now working on installing the new Marconi equipment.
J. Lyman Potts was named assistant manager.
J. Lyman Potts, former production manager, was appointed assistant manager. Bob Amos switched titles from program director to production manager. Former commercial manager Orrin Botsford left the station for CKMO in Vancouver. Francis Kirton left CKOC to become program director at CFOR Orillia. Bud deBow hosted "Rise and Shine" on CKOC.
According to an ad from the month of April, CKOC was now finally operating at 5,000 watts, day and night. The station was on the air 18 hours a day.
On May 7, CKOC broadcast a special program to mark its 25th anniversary and power boost to 5,000 watts. The transmitter site was at Elfrida.
CKOC received permission to use an emergency transmitter.
Steve Rowan left CKOC September 3 to become special events announcer at CKY Winnipeg. Lyman Potts was assistant manager. Neil Copeland was appointed program director late in the year. He had been continuity editor. Harold Gibson was transferred from CJOC Lethbridge to CKOC earlier in the year and he succeeded Copeland as continuity editor.
Bob Leitch became CKOC's morning man. Ron Kelly was named librarian. He had been with the station four years.
The station was now known as the "New CKOC".
Allan Brooks and Bill Knapp joined the CKOC announce staff.
Slogan: CKOC 1150 Station of the Stars.
CKOC, CHML and CJSH-FM (Hamilton Spectator) participated in the formation of Niagara Television Ltd. The company filed an application for the operation of a TV station at Hamilton, operating on channel 13. The application was approved.
Approval was given for the transfer of 5,000 common and 1,500 preferred shares in Wentworth Radio Broadcasting Co. Ltd.
Slogan: Where you'll always find radio's greatest shows.
Sales manager Lloyd Westmoreland left CKOC after 12 years. He joined the station in 1941 to head production and later promotions. After serving in the RCAF, he returned to CKOC as sales manager.
Joan Pritchard was appointed women's commentator at CFPL-AM. She had been director of women's activities for CKOC. Graham Emslie was news director. CKOC vice president W.T. "Bill" Cranston marked 20 years with the Taylor-Pearson-Carson organization and 25 years in radio.
CKOC director of women's activities, Joan Pritchard, was named women's commentator for CFPL-AM London.
Norman Inkster was appointed general sales manager. Perc Allen did sports. Graham Emslie did news and sports.
Clifford Sifton was appointed honorary lieutenant-colonel of the Governor-General's Horse Guards, Toronto regiment.
Clifford Sifton was president of the company. Some of the staff: William T. Cranston (manager), Terry J. Garner (program director), Grham Emslie (news director), Perc Allen (sports director), Al Jordan did the morning show - Rise 'n' Shine. He also hosted Homemaker's Holiday at 10 a.m. Baden Langdon did feature newscasts and hosted Hamilton Album. Hal Wagoner did the 4-6 p.m. show (country music). CKOC was known at this time as "Radio Hamilton". Leslie Horton was chief engineer. Jack Hill joined CKOC as production manager. He had been with sales rep firm, All-Canada.
ACMO - the All-Canada Mutually Operated stations set up a radio news bureau in August. The bureau channeled news from Ottawa by telegraph, telephone and tape recorder. Stations using the service: CJVI, CKWX, CJAT, CJCA, CFAC, CFGP, CJOC, CKCK, CKRC and CKOC.
It was October 3 when CKOC adopted the Hit Parade (Top 50) music format. The station would be known as "The Busy Bee". The new air staff: George Balcaen (6-9), Stu Daly (9-12), Gary Summers (12-1), George Davies (1-3), Randy Ferris (3-5), Don Webster (5-6), Ron Smith (6-8), Hi Fi Club (8-10:30), Moonglow (10:30-12). Bud Roberts (Bob Dearborn) joined the air staff.
CKOC's schedule before Top 50 was quite different. The following shows what the schedule looked like in March: Rise ‘n Shine (6-9:30), Morning Melodies (9:30-10), Country Music (10-11), Ladies Choice (11-12), Luncheon Club (12-1), George Dawes (1-3), Don Webster (3-6), Joe Carbury (6-7), Echoes of Italy (7-8:30), Early Date (8:30-9), Leichester Square (9-9:30), Music You Know (9:30-10), Starlight (10-10:30) and Moonglow (10:30-12).
CKOC made application to increase its power from 5,000 watts to 10,000 watts.
Production manager Jack Hill was named assistant manager.
Clifford Sifton was president of the company. William E. Ballantyne was commercial manager. Gary Summers was sports director. Les Horton was chief engineer.
Announcer line-up: Gary Calvert (6-9), Jack Stephens (Talk, 9-noon), Doug Alexander (12-1:30), Ron Smith (1:30-4:30), Mike Jaycock (4:30-8, including Hit Parade from 7-7:30), Record Battle with Jimmie Rodgers (8-midnight).
Nevin Grant joined the copy department.
Dave Charles was now in PM Drive and John Mitter was doing the evening show. Paul Revere and Jim Blake were now heard on CKOC. Don Dawson left as president of Wentworth Radio and general manager of CKOC. Jim Grisenthwaite became CKOC's general manager, succeeding Dawson. Grisenthwaite had been general manager at CKRC Winnipeg.
Wentworth Radio Broadcasting Co. Ltd. applied for an FM licence but it was denied, as was a competing application from CHAM.
Announcer line-up: Jack Stevens (6-8:30), Con Stevenson (Talk, 8:30 to noon), Bob Bratina (12-4), Hal Weaver (4-8), Mike Kramer (8-1). Jack Stephens had been doing the talk show. Nevin Grant was appointed Music Director. Jim Grisenthwaite, CKOC general manager, was elected a director and vice president of Transcanada Communications Ltd.
Both CKOC and CHAM re-applied for FM licenses. Both had been turned down in the past because the BBG was not satisfied with the program proposals of each application.
Dave Charles was on-air.
J.R. Grisenthwaite was named vice president of Transcanada Communications and managing director of CKOC. R.A. Lamborn was named general manager of CKOC.
Dave Charles was back in PM Drive, Roger Ashby now handled evenings and Tom Iley was the overnight host.
Jack Hill died at the age of 51. He was a station veteran of 12 years, joining CKOC in late 1957 as production manager. He was named assistant manager in 1964. Hill hosted the station's "On The Line" opinion program for about a year. Hill started out at CJRM in Regina in 1938 as an announcer. He left for the RCAF from 1940-45, then returned to CJRM. He moved on to CKRC Winnipeg from 1946-56 as production manager, then went to All-Canada for just over a year, then it was on to CKOC.
Broadcast News was the main source of news for radio stations in Canada but only a handful at this time were subscribing to BN's voice (audio) service. CKOC was one of those stations.
On September 1, the name Wentworth Radio Broadcasting Co. Ltd. was dropped. CKOC came directly under the Armadale name.
Bob Bratina left for CHML. Con Stevenson did news. Nevin Grant became assistant program director.
Nevin Grant became program director.
Connie Smith joined the news department.
Dave Smith was now doing the 3-7 p.m. shift with Gord James on from 7-midnight.
Chief engineer Al Bennett received a severe electrical shock at the station's transmitter site on March 24. CKTB St. Catharines eingineer Warren Parker was helping Bennett out at the time. Parker applied resucitation and summoned assistance, and Bennett made a full recovery.
On May 16, CKOC 1150 was authorized to increase day and night power from 10,000 watts to 50,000 watts, and to move its transmitter from a site located about nine miles south of Hamilton to a property situated some 18 miles south of the city. The changes were needed because of increasing residential development around the existing tower site.
Both CKOC and CHML worked all summer to hopefully have their 50,000 watt
After he retired, Les Horton continued to act as a consultant to the station. He had earlier helped with the new studio work and was now assisting in the planning and
On June 18, applications for a new FM station (102.9 MHz) in Hamilton were denied. The applicants were Armadale Communications Ltd. (CKOC-AM), CJJD Radio Ltd. (CJJD-AM) and Patrick J. Hurley (on behalf of a company to be incorporated). If approved, Armadale would have used an effective radiated power of 40,000 watts.
The retired Les Horton was named Engineer of the the Year for 1979.
Franklyn Cooper also hosted the morning talk show. Pete Jaycock joined the announce team. Pauline Mitchell was now in the news department. Rebecca Johnstone did traffic.
CKOC's longtime chief engineer Les Horton passed away at age 77. He had been with the station since 1922 and retired in 1973. Horton continued his association with the station after retiring. He was a founding member of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters.
On-air: Jason Roberts (6-8:30), Con Stevenson (talk, 8:30-11), John Novak (11-3), Dave Smith (3-6), Scott Harris (6-9), Dale Parker (9-1), Bob Steele (1-6). Pauline Mitchell hosted the talk show from time to time. Ray Girard was also on-air at CKOC.
CKOC news director Con Stevenson left to become manager of sister station CKCK in Regina.
Ray Michaels joined the on-air staff at CKOC.
On-air: Jason Roberts, Franklyn Cooper (Talk), John Novak, Paul Wainwright, Bob Sherwin, Dave King, Scott Harris, Pete Newman, Ian Maclean, Mike Delving, Guy James, Pat Baillie, Marsha McKinnon, Sean Vedell, Ray Girard, Dale Parker, Pete Jaycock, Dale Parker, Ray Girrard. Pauline Mitchell and Robyn Foley hosted the talk show from time to time. Notes: Sean Vedell joined from CHNR Simcoe. Jaycock returned for swing. He joined in the spring from CING Burlington and left in the fall for sister station CKLH-FM.
Bob Bratina returned to Hamilton from CFRB Toronto. He was now doing the 9-11 a.m. shift at CKOC. John Crawford (news) left in November for CKFM Toronto.
The news team included: Bob Young, Robyn Foley, Pauline Mitchell, Gerry Johnson (traffic), Franklyn Cooper. Bob Bratina returned to CKOC. He had been at CFRB Toronto. Bratina left later in the year for CHML. Sean Vedell left.
Wolf Von Raesfeld was general manager. He joined CKOC / CKLH in August of 1988. He commented on the old and new buildings by saying the old Garfield location was great but when FM was added in 1986, there simply wasn't enough room anymore. It was only 6,000 square feet on two floors, plus part of the basement which was used for the engineering department.
Western World Communications announced that it would purchase CKCK / CKIT-FM Regina and CKRC / CHZZ-FM Winnipeg from Michael Sifton's Armadale Communications of Markham. Sifton said Armadale planned to retain CKOC / CKLH-FM but would focus more strongly on newspaper publishing.
Pete Newman moved from evenings to mid-days. Peter Daly returned from CJLB Thunder Bay. Doug Farraway (news) also did the
The following Monday (February 17) at 6:00 a.m., CKOC officially became CKMO, but would go by the name "Oldies 1150"... with an oldies format. The "MO" in the new call sign stood for "More Oldies."
Frank-Lyn Cooper, 56, died December 6. He had worked in CKMO (CKOC)'s news department for more than 37 years, the last 20 as morning news anchor. Last March, he moved to Crossroads Communications as a producer.
On-air: Bob Sherwin (6-10), Ray Michaels (10-3), John Novak (3-7), Craig Fox (7-1), Satellite Feed (overnight). Nevin Grant and Mike Nabuurs were also heard on-air. News: Gary Summers (sports), Doug Farraway, Brent Sleightholm, Caroline Innes, Robyn
On September 2, Armadale Communications Ltd. was given approval to sell CKOC and CKLH-FM to London Communications Inc. (Radiocorp). London Communications was owned by Jack W. Schoone and Irving Zucker. Zucker had founded CHIQ Radio (now CHAM) in the city in 1959.
On-air: Dave Smith (6-10), John Novak (10-3), Bob Sherwin (3-7), Ray Michaels (7-10), satellite (10-6).
Bob Wallace joined and left (PM Drive & assistant music director).
Doug Cameron was now in the news department.
In addition to program director duties at CKOC, Nevin Grant was now also programming co-owned talk station CJBK, in London.
On-air: Bob Sherwin (5:30-9), John Novak (9-2), Jason Farr (2-6), automation/satellite the rest of the time. Ray Michaels was heard on weekends.
Telemedia Radio VP Braden Doerr, most recently vice president of the Ontario regional group, assumed responsibility for the Southern Ontario cluster (London, Hamilton and St. Catharines). Rick Doughty, VP of Telemedia Northern Ontario (Sudbury, North Bay, Timmins, Sault Ste. Marie, Pembroke and Orillia) would continue in that assignment but also added responsibilities as a member of the executive committee of the Ontario division, reporting to Claude Beaudoin, Telemedia executive VP for Ontario region.
Tom Cooke was named to succeed Jim MacLeod as GM of Telemedia's three Hamilton stations. He had been Assistant GM at the company's four London stations.
General sales manager Wally Sollows left CKOC/CKLH-FM. General Manager Tom Cooke took over the job until a replacement could be found.
On-air: Jason farr (mornings), John Novak, Ray Michaels, Paul Wainwright, Nevin Grant, Doug Cameron, Brent Sleightholm, Mike Nabuurs (traffic). Notes: Bob Sherwin was replaced in mornings by Farr in January. Nevin Grant was PD.
To mark its 80th anniversary, CKOC played the top 80 songs of 1954 to 1974, and was honoured for its years of service by Mayor Bob Wade.
On December 22, J. Irving Zucker died at age 82. He founded CHAM-AM Hamilton as CHIQ and was part-owner of CKOC/CKLH in the 1990's.
Astral took ownership of the stations on October 29.
Former CKOC broadcaster (1930's) Lamont Tilden passed away August 8.