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Chuck Norman

​Chuck Norman started his radio career in 1948 as a late-night disc jockey where he made money selling time on his own show. Three years later he moved to WIL.

​Five or so years into that gig, he left the market for a year but returned and put WGNU (Granite City) on the air in 1961. In 1965, he added WGNU-FM, claiming it was the first radio station to broadcast country music in stereo. He sold the FM in 1978.

​The AM format was switched to talk in 1977 and the station was later dubbed “Radio Free St. Louis” developing its audience by featuring non-mainstream hosts.

​Through his entire life, Norman maintained ownership of the station, which, in his later years, gave him the distinction of being the only original sole-owner left in the St. Louis market.

​In addition, he held an annual holiday party every year starting in 1976 to benefit the area’s needy families.