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Jim White Passes Away

Chicagoland engineer involved with Hancock building broadcast facilities

Photo WFMT

A correction has been made to the high school radio station. It was WLTL in La Grange, Ill.

John Grayson has brought to our attention the passing this week of WFMT’s Jim White.

WFMT(FM), Chicago, Chief Engineer James Patrick White, Ph.D., was found dead at his home in Evanston, Ill., on Tuesday. His family suspects his death is related to complications from his lifelong affliction with Crohn’s disease.

Jim started in radio at WLTL, a high school radio station at Lyons Township High School, La Grange, Ill. Later, as a student at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale, he worked at the university’s student-owned and operated station, WIDB, then went on to become chief engineer of WTAO(FM) in nearby Murphysboro, Ill.

After finishing at SIU he moved to Chicago landing at WMET(FM) (now WNUA) where he oversaw myriad studio and RF updates and rebuilds. He became heavily involved in the redesign and overhaul of the RF combiner at the John Hancock Center.

His passion for RF eventually lead him to create Chicago Radio Engineers, a full-service consulting firm.

He joined the staff of WFMT as chief engineer in February.

In 1994, Jim earned a doctorate in electrical engineering from Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. He was also a ham radio operator, WB9HOK.

Arrangements are pending. Meanwhile, a tribute to Jim can be found at WFMT.