Roy Hennessy, a well-known Vancouver DJ in the 1960s and ’70s and a past General Manager of CITI FM Winnipeg and CFRB Toronto, passed away late Tuesday after suffering a stroke on May 27. He was 80.
Originally from Ladner, BC, Hennessy started his broadcast career doing evenings at CKOK Penticton in the early 1960s. Six months later he was hired to do the all-night show at CHQM Vancouver. In 1964, he joined CKLG Vancouver – first as host of Real Roy Hennessy evenings and later morning drive where he had a 12-year run – establishing himself as one of the best-known DJs on the West Coast. Hennessy took over as program director in 1976 and was instrumental in the station’s transition to the CFOX-FM call letters in 1979. Hennessy signed LG off with “The End” by The Doors, followed by a few minutes of dead air, signing “The Fox” on with “FM” by Steely Dan.
Hennessy then made the move to Edmonton with Moffatt Broadcasting and accepted his first General Manager role in Winnipeg at CKY/CITI FM. That was followed by CKXL and CHFM Calgary. He joined Standard Broadcasting in the early ’90s, helping usher CFRB 1010 Toronto into an all-news format as President & General Manager of the station.
After five challenging years at CFRB, Hennessy formed radio advertising agency RadioWorks with David Bray. In 2008, he went on to become part of the ownership group that launched Shore 104 (CHHR-FM) Vancouver, alongside Bob Mackowycz Sr., serving as President.
David Bray told Broadcast Dialogue he was deeply saddened by the news of Hennessy’s passing.
“Together we founded Hennessy & Bray Communications/RadioWorks inc. and worked together for over 13 years. His love of radio was infectious and no one knew the medium better. He was the consummate professional. But most importantly, I will miss the man who was my faithful friend for so many years,” said Bray.
Hennessy was awarded the inaugural Ontario Association of Broadcasters (OAB) President’s Award in 2005.
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