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Author:  Ginny G.
E-mail:  ggnadt@execpc.com
Date:  8/16/2007 5:32:22 PM
Subject:  Ron's Obit from Curry Country Reporter
Message:  Ronald Tomberlin Lyons

Published: August 15, 2007

Ronald Tomberlin Lyons

June 27, 1938 – August 3, 2007

Ron Lyons, local KGBR radio host, longtime traffic anchor at KCBS radio in San Francisco, and a veteran of a half-century in broadcasting, died of cancer Friday, August 3, 2007. He was 69.

Ron started in radio in 1955 as the host of "Records with Ronnie" in his native Asheville, N.C., at a time when, as he used to say, "the sweet pop of the early '50s was being swept away by rock 'n' roll." After retiring from KCBS in 2004, he moved to Gold Beach, where he came full circle to host an afternoon music program on KGBR until this spring, when his health worsened.

Born Ronald Tomberlin, he hit the San Francisco airwaves in 1962 after the Army drafted him and assigned him to the Presidio. The stars he interviewed over the years included Frank Sinatra and the Beatles. He worked in the Bay Area and Sacramento, mostly on music shows, at KEWB, KFBK, KNBR and KNEW before coming to KCBS around 1987.

He was well-known as the morning traffic anchor on KCBS since the early 1990s, giving traffic and weather reports every 10 minutes from 5 to 10 a.m. He ad-libbed each report with information he got from four aircraft spotters, highway patrol and police scanner bulletins and updates phoned in by a network of listeners. Commuters felt he was in the seat next to them when they were traveling in to work, and they couldn't ask for a better traveling companion.

On heavy-traffic days in the Bay Area, Ron often advised listeners that "maybe you should fax yourself in to work today," and told them he was "knocking on Formica" at the studio for clearer conditions. Throughout Ron's radio career, humor was a constant - he felt there was no situation in which a little laughter wouldn't be helpful. Ron's sense of fun was exemplified by a show where he invited listeners to call in and have their dogs woof along with "Barking Dogs Jingle Bells."

One of Ron's greatest joys was producing compilation CDs of favorite music for family members and friends. An avid music buff, he produced a commercially released audio biography of his favorite singer/songwriter, the late Mickey Newbury. Through his connection to Mickey, with whom he had become good friends, Ron met other fans of Mickey's music; many of whom also became his close friends.

Besides his work with music, he spent his so-called retirement serving on the Board of Directors of the Gold Beach Chamber of Commerce, making public appearances on behalf of KGBR, and admiring the beauty of the area – especially the winter storms coming off the ocean.

Ron is survived by his wife of over 40 years, Lana Lyons of Gold Beach; son Sean and his wife Terri, also of Gold Beach; and three grandchildren. Services will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, August 18 the Calvary Chapel in Gold Beach. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions in his name to Curry Home Health and Hospice.

 Ron's Obit from Curry Country Reporter by Ginny G.  at 8/16/2007 5:32:22 PM
 Re: Ron's Obit from Curry Country Reporter by Karen R  at 8/16/2007 5:56:02 PM
 Re: Ron's Obit from Curry Country Reporter by Roy  at 8/16/2007 10:18:49 PM
 This one is really well written... by Ginny G. at 8/17/2007 12:26:58 PM
 Re: Ron's Obit from Curry Country Reporter by Sylvia at 8/17/2007 7:40:19 AM