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Walker Passes Away After Last “Big Broadcast”

DC radio man spent 60 years doing what he loved

Washington public radio station WAMU(FM) tweeted that longtime “The Big Broadcast” host Ed Walker passed away early Monday morning after his final show aired as scheduled Sunday night.

Walker died at age 83 due to complications from cancer, the station reports. He was with family and reportedly finished listening to the recording of his final program.

In nearly 60 years on the air, Walker is credited with many accomplishments — not the least of which is his status as an early blind broadcaster. Despite resistance to broadcast career from the vocational rehabilitation service that paid his college tuition, he co-founded WAMU as a student at The American University in Washington, which holds the station’s license.

He began hosting “The Big Broadcast” in 1990 and was on the air in D.C. longer than anyone else.

Walker also co-hosted drive time program “The Joy Boys” on WRC(AM) with Willard Scott (of “The Today Show” fame) for two decades on WRC in the 1950s and ’60s.

In 2009, Walker was elected into the Radio Hall of Fame in the “Local or Regional Pioneer” category. Here is a poignant look at Walker recording his farewell show last week.