Former Modesto Radio Museum Director, Robert “Bob” Mohr, passed away January 1, 2010 after a long fight with Lymphoma. Bob’s radio career spanned nearly 50 years beginning in Ventura in the 50’s and ending at Citadel’s KESP Modesto in 2008. Although he started as an announcer / DJ, his true talent was in radio sales. “He was an excellent salesperson, and the gift he gave was his integrity and total concern for the client,” said Jean Western, director of sales for Citadel Broadcasting. “He had an ability to make each and every individual he knew feel special. He was just a dear man who was beloved in the industry.”
Former co-worker Joel Shorr, who worked with Bob in the 60s at KBEE AM -FM in Modesto, remembers his true love was sports and his signature line, “you don’t have to be a sport to play one”. “He enjoyed broadcasting sports, and was a real pro at it” said Bob Neutzling who also worked with him at KBEE in the 80s. “He was the ultimate pro, a real gentleman, and about as honest as they came. He had a few years on many of us that worked with him, and he would often refer to himself as, “your old dad”. At KESP, and Citadel’s group of stations in Modesto, he was affectionately known by the younger generation as the “typewriter guy,” because he preferred a typewriter over computers or cell phones. His favorite mode of communication was with posted notes and typewriter messages which were punctuated with missing letters matching the keys missing from his trusty typewriter. His initial fame as “typewriter guy” came from his outrageous reading of a line from a popular song on-the-air every Tuesday morning. Callers would guess the name to win a prize.
He wrote and recorded most of the commercials for his clients which covered everything from jewelry stores to air conditioners to cars to restaurants to hardware companies. He also produced and hosted “Mohr on Sports” for many years. He particularly liked doing local play-by-play sports.
Bob’s career of nearly 50 years in broadcasting earned him recognition for the longest continuous tenure in radio broadcasting in this area.
Bob, a native of Lakewood, Ohio, attended high school in Cleveland. He moved to Ventura in the 50’s after serving in the Army. He came to Modesto in 1963 and joined the staff of KBEE in Modesto after brief stops at stations in Eureka, CA and Grants Pass, Or. Along the way, he had the opportunity to mentor future TV game-show star Bob Eubanks. He was a graduate College of the Pacific in Stockton.
Bob was a charter member and President of Chapter 33 of the Toastmasters; President of Quarterback Club and Exchange Club member. He also emceed the Oakland A’s press meetings at the Sportsmen of Stanislaus (SOS) club where he was an active member for years. Bob insisted both of his daughters join Toastmasters, and they each became talented public speakers, a nice testament to Bob. He also was an active member of the Valley Broadcast Legends. A grand party was his 80th birthday with family and friends at the SOS Club in 2008.
Bob ended his 50-plus years in radio more than a year ago, when he learned of his Lymphoma. He died on New Year’s Day (2010) He was 82.
Bob is survived by his wife, Marcia; daughters, Analisa Woodward of Fresno, and Jennifer Barrett; and two granddaughters.
Interment will be conducted at 10:30 AM at San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery in Santa Nella, CA on January 22, 2010 followed by a reception at Pea Soup Andersen’s restaurant in Santa Nella.
Sad News: The email below was received today from Bob’s daughter, Analisa in Fresno, regarding her mother, Marcia. Our condolences have been sent to her and the family.
March 26, 2010
Please forgive the informality of this email, but I am having a hard time speaking on the phone with everyone. You are being contacted because I know that my mom meant something to you. On Wednesday she didn’t wake up. I believe that she died of a broken heart since my father’s recent passing. I just wanted to Let you all know. Again, forgive the method of my communication.