Remembering KDHS – Ross Rumsey, Student

What year(s) were you involved with KDHS-FM?
RR- Looking back about 50+ years, for sure the school year of 1968 – 1969. I was among the students who

KDHS Station Manager Ross Rumsey repairs the equipment

were members of the planning group. It was our job to lay the ground work to put KDHS on the air.  Names I remember from that time were: Scott McCauley, Gary Fernandez, Frank Marksman, Gary Copeland,  Chris Parker, Jeff Cree and Forrest Oden. Our advisor was Ron Underwood who later helped students at Beyer High put KBHI-FM on the air.

What did you do on KDHS?
RR- I was elected or appointed Station Manager.  I remember working to secure donations of equipment from companies like Sparta, Jampro and Ampex. Then we assembled the gear into a workable control room configuration. I was taking electronics shop at the time and was the school AV/Sound guy which gave me a good background for working with the equipment. Unfortunately, we didn’t get the station on the air before I graduated in June of 1969. I did get invited back the following year to do one board shift!  Since I was station manager, I got my picture in the yearbook.
How did KDHS affect your career decisions?
RR- Working on creating KDHS cemented my decision that broadcasting was the direction in which I wanted to go. I was hanging out some at KTRB with Tom Romano. His dad, Tony, was the Downey High head custodian, so I worked with him running sound equipment at school, and later worked for Tony running sound equipment for his business, Professional Sound. That’s how I met Tom, and that led to eventually DJing on the short lived progressive rock show on KTRB-FM when I was taking Radio and TV broadcast classes at Modesto Junior College (MJC).
What is a favorite memory of KDHS?

RR-  Well, since I only had one board shift, most of my memories are of the planning year. Good memories

Ampex Cue-Matic, “Mickey Mouth” (photo courtesy Ross Rumsey)

of working with the other students on the various planning duties. I can remember going with our advisor, Ron Underwood to pickup our used 10 watt transmitter donated by UOP. Also, going to Jampro regarding our antenna. Another memory… we received a donation from Ampex of 2 Cue-Matic magnetic disc recorders. These used 11.75 inch floppy discs to record about 3 minutes and 45 seconds of audio, much like the endless loop audio carts by Gates & Sparta did. They were large machines, and you loaded the disc into a big slot on the front. We took to calling them the Mickey Mouth Machines.

Ross Rumsey today is employed with KFSN-TV, Fresno as a producer, director and announcer. He is also Creative Director and Producer for Ross Rumsey Creative Studios. Photo courtesy of Ross Rumsey.

How did KDHS help you as you entered into a career?
RR- I think mainly just the experience of laying the groundwork for the station and learning to work with the others on the team.

Any individuals who standout as mentors or inspirational in getting you started?

RR- Our advisor, Ron Underwood. He was the school’s speech & debate teacher. He was always encouraging to us as students and as the KDHS team.  Ron had attended MJC and Fresno State where he was involved with Radio and TV. A project for our speech class was “The Comic Section of the Air.”  We would go to the MJC radio studios and record a program of us dramatically reading the Sunday Modesto Bee comic section with character voices. It would air on KBEE on Sundays. It was the Modesto version of what Fresno State radio students had been doing for many years. When Gary Fernandez and I went to Fresno State, majoring in Radio and TV Broadcasting, we had the pleasure of working  on Fresno’s Comic Section of the Air program.

 

 

 

 

Remembering KDHS – Ron Underwood, Speech Instructor/Advisor

Remembering KDHS – Jeff Cree, Student

Remembering KDHS – Angie Decker Allen

Remembering KDHS – Mike Green, Student

Remembering KDHS – Les Simar, Student