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Gary Michaels (née Rau)

Date of Death: April 6, 2023
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All services will be private

Larger-than-life radio personality Gary Michaels (née Rau) passed away Thursday, April 6. Born May 29, 1951, in Baltimore, MD, Gary knew he wanted to be a DJ by age 5. In high school in the 1960’s, he began interning at Baltimore’s WSID Soul station, and by age 19 garnered his own nightly Top 40 showContinue Reading

Tom Haynes left a message on September 3, 2023:
I was relatively new to radio in 1979 when I began working as a DJ at WQCM. Gary was the Program Director and the top jock. He was a decent and generous soul. Gary was very talented and one of the best DJs I had the pleasure to work with during my radio career. He left us too soon.
Michelle Kistner left a message on July 24, 2023:
I worked with Gary at WKTK/WQSR FM Radio in Baltimore, MD. I remember him very fondly and just learned of his passing. My sincere condolences to everyone who was lucky enough to know him. I lost touch after he left for better opportunities... I remember the Grammy Party he threw for friends at his house in Lutherville. We had so much fun that evening...all of us from the station together. May he be with all those that left before him that he loved. ♥️
Brian Mongeon left a message on May 22, 2023:
I called Gary at WLPL back in the early 70s asking for a request. That phone call changed my life is so many ways. He was a fantastic person and really fun to be around. I remember riding around with him listening to his basement transmitter. RIP Gary. I'll miss you.
Brian Mongeon left a message on May 21, 2023:
In memory of Gary Michaels (née Rau), Brian Mongeon lit a candle
Joe Pachino left a message on May 12, 2023:
I joined the the staff of WLPL to do the all-night show in 1973. Gary preceded me 7-midnight. He came up with an ingenious plan to take on our AM competition...WCAO. He would tightly wrap about 2 inches of Scotch Tape around the capstan of both turntables. So every current song we played, always a 45 RPM, would actually be heard at 45 1/2 or 46 RPM. It wasn't fast enough to sound like The Chipmunks but a listener, being familiar with that current hit, would subconsciously think it was "slow" on WCAO after getting used to it on our station. Genius! I just found out about Gary's death yesterday. I'm truly saddened. What a character. He was so much fun to work with. So long, Pal.
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Jim Furst left a message on April 27, 2023:
I met Gary when WYRE in Annapolis MD changed over to a "straight ahead" Jazz format. I had never been on the radio or DJ'd before. He showed me what to do and made me feel comfortable despite my non-existent radio experience. All I can add is that he seemed to be a very kind man and was an absolute "real pleasure" to work with.
Todd Smith left a message on April 16, 2023:
Very sad to hear of Gary's passing. He was "one of a kind". I have to thank him and WQCM Station Owner, Gary Portmess for hiring me in the summer of 1979 at the age of 19. I was in heaven. I went to work at "Radio Wonderful". January 1, 1980, WQCM went 24 hours and I was offered overnight position. I enventully moved up to the 7p-12m / 8p-1a shift and was the host for most of the High School Dances that were very popular in the early 80's. This never would have happened if it weren't for Michaels. He was fun to work with. He taught me how to be a better D.J. It was some of the best years of my life. You never knew what words would come out of his mouth whenever he opened the mic. One of his best lines I ever heard was..."You can watch the soaps on TV to see who's doin' who...or you can listen to me on 97Q". Rest in peace GM. Todd "Dan Kennedy" Smith
Tom Conroy left a message on April 15, 2023:
I have had the honor to know Gary for many decades, I was just getting my FCC license after Gary had a few years on air. Gary was generous, one of the best Top 40 jocks, and a whiz at production. We often talked music, his time at WSID provided him the knowledge of “soul” music, he had a huge collection including hard to find recordings. Gary also worked at the old channel 24, he talked about the good old days there at a young age. Oh, the stories he told of his time in Baltimore radio. He’d call on me to talk engineering, comparing notes. Frankly, he had much more patience at times in “IT” related issues as the technology changed, I was real proud of him. I spent many weekends at his little piece of heaven west of Winchester, he and Bob were great hosts! Gary had a soft heart for cats, he rescued quite a few. He was a great cook too, and loved a fine bottle of wine. On top of that Gary became a bit of Mister Green Jeans and always had quite a garden, he loved canning and was very good at it. My dad once told me that as we get older, we lose more friends. I sure do miss Gary as a friend, and as one who shared so many broadcast memories. We could talk for hours!
David Custy left a message on April 14, 2023:
I'm so sorry of hearing about Gary's passing. He was the Program Director at WYRE in the mid 90's while I was a DJ. I fondly recall his enormous energy and excitement for the new jazz station! Most importantly I remember his kindness, patience and unwavering help he gave me to usher me on the air my first time and all times! He was always a nice guy and great individual. RIP Gary. Thanks for the wonderful memories!
Jim Curtis left a message on April 14, 2023:
I worked with Gary many years ago at WQCM radio. It was always interesting. He helped me be better at my job as I was younger than him. Great guy we all will miss him. RIP
Joyce M Conroy left a message on April 14, 2023:
Gary was absolutely one of the best in radio. He inspired me as a teenager to consider the field of broadcasting as I was a fan of his evening radio show on WLPL. Just loved his energy, personality and knowledge of the music. It was an honor working with him at WQSR and he was often strict with me as a beginning broadcaster; however, I soon learned that it was out of caring and he became a true friend. Sending love and comfort to Bob and all of Gary's family and fellow friends. He will be missed, but always in our heart.
Fru Fru Reed a.k.a. Kauleen Sharp left a message on April 14, 2023:
Gary was the Sweetest friend and MORE then a co-worker. He took me under his wing when I was in my 20’s when I was a DJ on WQSR. He had my friend Candy andI over for the best meal of my life. He showed us old films and we laughed constantly. He told me once that I should be on Saturday Night Live. Gary believed in me and we cared for each other unconditionally. I enjoyed finding Gary over the years and our conversations were always inspiring. I will Love you as aBest Friend Forever. He just reconnected with me on Facebook and all he could talk about was the love for his Husband and cats….we had so many classic funny moments on air and off I have shared with many a bartender…lol. I’m smiling and crying at the same time. Love to you All, give his kittys a pet from my two kittys. Hugs. Till we meet again inRock n Roll Heaven…Peace
Christine Snyder left a message on April 14, 2023:
Gary Michaels was an incredible radio talent, and such a kind, giving person. I grew up listening to him on WQCM and in 1982 he generously gave of his time to sit for an interview about radio and rock and roll with me that got published in my high school paper — a story that led me to pursue writing as a career. I will always be grateful to him and I am so sorry to hear of his passing. I am sure he touched others’ lives in a similar fashion — he will not be forgotten.
Jeff Martin left a message on April 14, 2023:
I was sorry to hear that Gary had passed. I enjoyed working with Gary at WHAG/WQCM Radio in Hagerstown, MD in the seventies.
Gary Portmess left a message on April 13, 2023:
Omps Funeral Home left a message:
Please accept our deepest condolences for your family's loss.
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