Who's Who at WONN

Buddy's Co-Workers

Arch Abernethy
Willie Anderson, Sr.
Bob Bartel
Marji Bedgood
Tim Bedgood
Bob Berry
Frank Berry
Mike Booker
Al Brock
Charlie Brown
Charles Bruce
Garland Burt
Ed Cain
Jim Campbell
Dave Campbell
Bert Christopher
Frank Clarke
Bob Crews
Tom Dell
Larry DeVore
Al Dohany
Jack Eilertsen
Howard Ellis
Florida Citrus Mutual Calling
Ron Fraiser
Bill Francisco
Joe Garagiola
John Gilman
Eddie Glover
Murray Goldsborough
Dick Goleno
Stan Grams
Rich Halten
Bob Helmick
Mike Helminski
Don Hiers
Alex Houston
Happy Howard
John Hoy
Jan Hutchens
Dan Huth
Joe Pyne Show
Bob Jones
Jay Kuppers
Ernie Legge
Jim Maloy
Larry Marker
Phyllis Maxwell
Bill McClure
Duane McConnell
Yvonne McDaniel
DuLaurence Miller
Pat Morgan
Skip Paradise
Mike Parrish
June Pastore
Jonnie Pinkston
Ed Pyle
Tommy Reynolds
Jay Rich
Roy Riley
Joyce Robbins
Terry Roberts
Dave Ross
Dan Sanborn
Gene Schlei
Frank Schulte
Bob Shoopman
Pappy Smith
Jerry Smithwick
Smoke House Serenade
Bill Snyder
Dave Sousa
Steve Sparkman
Jim Stevenson
Tom Talcott
John Taylor
George Tuttle, Sr
Jacqueline Valentino
Tutt Walker
Phil Wayne
Dick Weaver
Alan Wendt
Dave Wenger
Mark Wheeler
Bob White
Chris Wolf
Bob Wolfe
Shirley Wolfe
Woody Wooden

Buddy Penn

Buddy (Ralph Beadles Penn) was born in Fulton, KY and moved to Lakeland with his family when he was 4 years old. After high school (and two years of college at Florida Southern), he enlisted in the Navy and served in the Korean War.

From 1959 to 1963, Penn was WONN’s morning drive air personality and worked in the sales department each day after he finished his radio show. He was Lakeland radio’s original Morning Mayor and everybody listened to him. Buddy played country music from 5AM to 7AM, then the station’s regular format from 7 until 9.

Many listeners will remember him playing Reveille Rock by Johnny & the Hurricanes each morning at 6:30 while shouting, “Get up all you 6:30 getter-uppers you.” Early on, his nickname was ‘Lonesome Lem’ (even throwing in a southern accent for the first two hours of his show), but he later dropped the Lem portion of the name, and always referred to the WONN studios as the Rabbit Reservation. Each morning he’d close his show with his usual theme song, Lenny Dee’s Oh Lonesome Me.

In the spring of 1963, Buddy joined a group of key WONN personnel who left to join WYSE, Lakeland’s Top 40 station, which was planning to change its call letters to WWAB. Once there, he would also do the morning shift. He returned to WONN in 1967, left a second time in 1975 and, in the 1980’s, occasionally filled in on a part-time basis.

Penn also called the play-by-play action for Lakeland Dreadnaught football for many years and was a co-owner and founder of The Grove Theater at Grove Park Shopping Center.

On February 5, 2015, Buddy passed away at Lakeland Regional Medical Center at the age of 82.

Station History

1959 - 1963 WONN (On Air Personality)
1959 - 1963 WONN (Sales)
1967 - 1975 WONN (On Air Personality)

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