The MAB is saddened to announce that past board member and Barry Broadcasting/WBCH (Hastings) owner Ken Radant passed away on September 20 at age 80.
Ken’s radio career began in 1953, when, as a senior in high school, he became a weekend disc jockey at WOAP in Owosso. He kept the job during his college years at Alma and Michigan State University, graduating from MSU in 1958.
Ken and Marjorie, his partner in life, were married June 15, 1957. They moved to Hastings in 1958 after Ken accepted an on-air and news position at WBCH. He was made manager of the station in 1960, and the couple later purchased the station. Radant liked to say the W goes on all radio stations east of the Mississippi and the BCH stands for Barry County/Hastings. Those call letters served the station well when it decided to play country music, saying WBCH stands for “World’s Best Country Hits.”
First elected in 1968 to serve on the Barry County Board of Commissioners, Radant was reelected to seven consecutive two-year terms and chair for three terms. He was appointed by Gov. William Milliken and reappointed by Gov. James Blanchard as the state appointee to the Barry County Social Services Board, on which he served for 14 years. He was president of the Barry County Chamber of Commerce and member of its board of directors for 45 years. He also sat on the Michigan Association of Broadcasters’ Board of Directors and the International Broadcasters’ Idea Bank.
A faithful and active member of Emmanuel Episcopal Church since 1958, Radant served many years as a lay reader, treasurer, vestry member and on diocesan committees.
Ken’s funeral service were held September 24. Details of the arrangement are available here.