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W. Charles “Charlie Chuck” Welch Celebrates 50 Years of Broadcasting


By Pastor Willie C. H. Garrett

Special to The Truth


Five decades ago the US national average price of a gallon of regular gasoline was 35 cents.  For those who went grocery shopping they paid 23 cents for a loaf of bread, 62 cents for a dozen of eggs, 12 cents for a pound of sugar and $1.10 for a gallon of milk.  You mailed a letter for six cents, bought a new car for $2,000 and drove it to your $40,000 new home.  Records show that the population of the United States was 202,677,000 and of that number there was one who in the radio industry stood out among the rest.  That person, W. Charles Welch affectionately known as “Charlie Chuck”.


On February 4, 2019, Charlie Chuck will celebrate 50 years of Broadcasting.  His career ladder includes, broadcasting with WKLR, Booth Broadcasting and one year later served as the Station Manager; Sales Manager for KCOH in Houston, TX as well as WWWS in Saginaw, Michigan; and General Manager for WVOI JACOR Communications here in Toledo, Ohio.  While working for others, Charlie Chuck held on to his dream to own his own radio station.


To make his dream a reality, Charlie Chuck petitioned the FCC for a license in pursuit of an available frequency.  The process was a long and tedious journey that involved attorneys, court proceedings, plenty of paperwork, scrambling through red tape, multiple denials and in return, multiple appeals.  Despite what others would see as obstacles, Charlie Chuck remained focused and after ten years on his initial petition, WJUC-FM 107.3 THE JUICE officially signed on the air, February 27, 1997.  It was then that he entered in the local history books as the first African American male to build a radio station from the ground up in Toledo, Ohio.


Fifty years ago, you would turn on the radio and hear songs like, “I Don’t Know Why” by Stevie Wonder, “I Don’t Want Nobody to Give me Nothing” by James Brown, Marvin Gaye song, “I Heard it Through the Grapevine” and The Jackson 5 could be heard singing, “I Want you Back”.  But one song played then and still applies today, was a song by The Edwin Hawkins Singers, “Oh Happy Day”.  This is a “Happy Day” as we salute W. Charles Welch.


As the lyrics of “I’ve Gotta Be Me” (1969) sung by Sammy Davis Jr. states, “Whether I’m right or whether I’m wrong, whether I find a place in this world or never belong, I gotta be me, I’ve gotta be me.  What else can I be but what I am, I want to live, not merely survive. And I won’t give up this dream, of life that keeps me alive, I gotta be me, I gotta be me.  Charlie Chuck did not give up on his dream and for that reason we ask you to join us in congratulating him on 50 years in Broadcasting!


Copyright © 2019 by [The Sojourner's Truth]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 01/30/19 14:14:53 -0500.



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