My name is Bob Cook and I worked at CKLW from 1966 thru 1969. I was an engineer for the RKO Group. I filled in as a Cameraman in the afternoons while attending Wayne State University. Prior to 66 I was an engineer at WCAR Radio. I built the FM studios for the newly acquired FM station license.
Bill was a great guy. He was a genuine person that respected others. It was amazing the Hollywood actors he could attract to the studio while doing his afternoon movies. One of his friends was Ray Charles. They seemed to be very close. He detested Jerry Lewis and loved "father knows best". He was known as Hollywood's greatest "stand-in".
He was a great pool player. He said that that was a way to kill time while waiting for the phone to ring. All actors from his era seemed to play pool.
He was very close to the Ford Family. He was given a 65 T-Bird serial number three. This was a gift from the Fords. He went to their retreat on an island near the mouth of the St. Clair river on a regular basis. He lived in Gross point woods. He bought a hurse for his son, 1958 I think. In any event, he loved to drive this to work. He also had an older Rolls Royce but never drove it to work. He wanted to go around incognito. The hurse was equipped with a mattress and pillows in case he wanted to "sleep-over". I am sure that was his son's idea. It was rather humorous
When he traveled by air he always bought a life insurance policy for the studio crew and mailed it back to the station. He always did favors for the TV crew. He also held many birthday parties and paid for these out of his own pocket.
He was rather nervous before shows. He had a special foam mat that had about 20 different life-size women's breasts. It was given to him by one of his Hollywood friends. He always put it under the desk and he would play with it with his shoes off. One day we stole it for the fun of it and he went absolutely berserk. He refused to go on the set or do a show until it was returned. That joke backfired and brought out the only time he went "off the deep end". He had certain rituals while doing the show. He never used cue cards and all the shows were LIVE as we only had two video recorders and they were used to tape network feeds. This never bothered him.
He had a fabulous memory. He knew every movie and every actor verbatim. It was amazing. We tried to stump him all the time but we never did. When he forgot he usually was able to remember by the following day. He never cheated. He could read over the lines to a one minute commercial and do the commercial on a single pass. He was always at ease in front of a camera or while interviewing a person. He was was able to make guests feel at home.
Bill was a great story teller. He provided us with hours of trivia while he was in Hollywood.
Bill was truly a Gentleman. When his contract with CKLW was terminated (being bought out by CBC) he was devastated. He really liked working in Canada with his "family". When he went over to channel 50 (I believe) he came back numerous times to have lunch with everybody. His heart was not into it.
He eventually moved to West Palm Beach where many of his friends had retired or winter homes.
He was very frugal. Never flaunted his money and he was always very gracious. He always had time for people.
He can tell you many other stories about Bill and his "girl friends" but I consider that was his private life and that's that.
I had an opportunity to talk to Bill in WPB in the late 70's. I left a message with the station and he promptly returned my call. He knew me right away and was genuinely interested in my career and whom I married.
I loved Bill..... kind, unpretentious, genuine, and a very sincere person that loved to live, and loved life.
He never talked about his family. I believe his wife died a few years earlier and he never wanted to talk about her. He carefully limited his personal conversations to generalities.
Hope this adds some light to Bill Kennedy. I many times think of him as we grew close to each other while working together. He invited me to his home on two occasions and was a very gracious host.
I currently reside in the Bahamas. You can reach me at  if you have any specific questions regarding Bill.
I recently drove around Detroit and was totally shocked. Detroit is not what I remembered..... so disappointing.
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