Bob Devine became one of the most beloved radio announcers in the United States during his nearly 40 years on the radio at WCRF-FM.
On Sunday, his voice was silenced.
“His primary legacy is love for Jesus Christ. His life was devoted to following after Him and being tender to his family,” said his son, John Devine, 51. “He was very consistent. The guy on the radio was, in many ways, the same guy at home. Our home was filled with a lot of laughter and a lot of love.”
Mr. Devine, 76, died Sunday morning, after a long battle with cancer, at the home that he shared with his wife of 54 years, Wanda.
“His passion in life was the Scriptures. He loved to read the Scriptures, study the Scriptures and proclaim the Scriptures,” Wanda Devine said. “We always read the Scriptures, prayed and sang songs. Even the hospice workers were moved by his commitment to serving our Lord and Savior.”
Wanda Devine said her husband’s tool for serving God was his voice. He used his voice to spread the gospel over the radio since he was 16 years old, she said.
After a nudge from his pastor at a church in Walton, N.Y., Mr. Devine received his first broadcast license and got his first job as chief engineer/announcer at a local radio station (WDLA). He went on to earn his undergraduate degree in broadcasting at Bob Jones University in Greenville, S.C., where he met his wife.
In 1958, he landed an engineering job at Moody Bible Institute’s home station in Chicago. He worked in Chicago for about a year, before being offered the engineer/announcer position at Moody’s WCRF (103.3-FM) in Brecksville in 1959.
At WCRF, Mr. Devine served as the morning host of the Clockwatchers, from 1962 until his retirement in 2000. The show featured gospel music, world news, Bible quotes, tidbits about gardening, mystery sounds and descriptions of the morning’s sunrise.
He also developed and produced several original shows for the Moody Broadcasting station, including the Story Book Room. The syndicated 15-minute children’s program includes two segments — nature’s corner and a Bible story. In both segments, Devine used different voices to dramatize the stories of animals, plants, insects and Bible characters. The program still airs locally at 7 a.m. Saturdays on WCRF.
Mr. Devine was inducted into the Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 1990.
“Bob was a man of God. He just loved the Lord and that was the motivation of everything he did,” said Dick Lee, Moody Radio’s Cleveland station manager. “Many of our listeners knew him as the one who started their days with hope, enthusiasm and a love of life. He just exuded happiness and joy.”
WCRF will share a special tribute at 8:30 a.m. today. The tribute will also be available at www.moodyradiocleveland.fm.
In addition to his wife and son, of Elgin, Ill., Mr. Devine is survived by a daughter, Barbara Cunningham of Medina; his children’s spouses; seven grandchildren; one great-grandchild; and a sister, Alice Allen of California.
A private graveside service is planned. A public memorial service is at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Grace Church, 7393 Pearl Road, in Middleburg Heights. Billow Funeral Home in Fairlawn is handling arrangements.
“Our memories are of a warm, kind, loving dad, who had the largest smile you can imagine. He had a heart for the Lord. He wanted his words to be the Lord’s words — he really lived his life like that,” said Barbara Cunningham, 52. “He loved nature and I’m sure we will remember him every time we see a flower or a beautiful sunrise or sunset.”