Turning The Pages

By : Paige Cline

A few years ago, around 1994 I think, there was a radio show on that was gaining in popularity every week. 
On Saturday mornings at about 8:30 Randy took to the airwaves to bring a bit of the past to folks in and around the county. For the most part, the audience was made up of older folks who had lived through and had a need to hear the songs and music from their era. But not entirely. As the weeks went by there were more and more younger people who confessed that they were steady listeners. It was the stuff of their parents’ youth and sometimes their grandparents. 
The show itself was a sort of “Growin’ Up”. Instead of the pages of the Independent Herald, the column was on the radio. It was local history as lived and observed by children of the depression and of World War II. Living through those times probably accounts for the patriotic theme which was apparent in each and every program. As it was in Randy’s newspaper column. Those were times that engendered fierce patriotism in children and it never leaves you.
The show featured stories by Randy as only he could tell them. And, music from the era. Big band music. Many of the records were 78’s and original recordings. Most of the music came from the collection of a > minister friend in Gilbert who had one of the most extensive collections in the country. The significance, and the sounds, were not lost on the listeners. They loved it.
On occasion, Randy asked me to join him for a special hour-long program. Usually this was a holiday offering. I would dig through the old volumes of the paper and come up with bits of news from the day and incorporate it into the program. Randy was a master at leading me through my initial discomfort and, soon we would be chatting as if we were riding in the car to the studio. 
On a couple of occasions, people who had been listening to the program on their car radio dropped by the Mullens station to let us know they were tuned in. Or was that an admission? 
Anyway, we had a good time. Just as he could do in his written columns, Randy could take the microphone and one minute he would have his listeners laughing their tails off and the next he could bring a tear.Nobody did it better.
It’s a shame that those tapes are not around. I would venture to say that they would be just as popular today as the original program. Some things, and some people, are timeless.