This quartet of old men has jokingly been called the “Mt. Rushmore of Charlotte Broadcasting” — Ty Boyd, Robert D. Raiford, Doug Mayes, and HA Thompson.

We went to lunch on occasion, and the last time Doug was absent, so the other 3 musketeers connected at Charlotte- Jocks and Jills. We fist bumped before fist bumping was in vogue because Raiford doesn’t shake hands. He’s afraid of germs. Nothing has more germs than a radio station. Raiford has worked at 12 radio stations, HA, 6, and Ty, 5. Doug was the big screen guy. We matched bumping bruises on the back of our hands…Raiford had the biggest one.

Us 3 octogenarians settled into a booth and the first words out of Raiford’s mouth… “I think about quitting every day.” (and someone in the next booth applauded) He was still doing the “John Boy & Billy Show” well into his 80’s. Raiford piped up, “I finally got enough money to quit. You know I get a SAG check every month (Screen Actors Guild). I said…”If you were in the movies… what was it, the “Three Stooges Meet Frankenstein?”

Raiford was center stage before Ty and I could order our Metamucil. He said, “People ask me to write my memoir and I tell them…Who would give a s–?” Raiford is a true curmudgeon. He said Elvis and The Beatles drove him out of the DJ business back in the 60’s. I said, “How do you like the music on the ‘John Boy & Billy Show?’” He said, “I can’t stand it.”

I asked both of these guys if they ever drive with their left turn signal on? In unison they both said, “All the time.” And Raiford said, “I can’t hear the SOB.” Next question, “Did you ever lose your car in the parking deck?” Ty said, “Yeah” without embellishment. Raiford said, “I couldn’t find my car and had to get a cop to help me locate it.” I said, “Didn’t you use your horn on your key fob?” And he said, “What’s that?” It was probably time to take the car keys away from these guys.

We finished our 90 minute lunch and headed out the door. We were talking about DUI’s and Raiford said the cops give you a different test if they suspect you are under the influence of marijuana. They ask you to stand on one leg for 30 secs. Raiford, said…”I can’t do that anymore.” I said, “Let’s try it.” Picture 3 old men standing at the front door of Jocks & Jills trying to balance on one leg. Any observer would think we drank our lunch.

Ty, Raif, & Doug all passed in recent years. They made an awesome impact on Charlotte broadcasting.

If you’re old enough…THANK YOU for listening.

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