Longtime Dick Purtan Engineer/Producer Dies
April 14, 2023
Art Vuolo, Jr. passes along news of the passing of John "Ankles" Stewart has passed away. Stewart was the longtime engineer/producer of the popular Dick Purtan radio show at CKLW Windsor, Ontario and Detroit stations: WCZY Z-95-5, WKQI Q-95 and WOMC 104.3 FM.
Stewart died April 3 at age 71. According to his obituary, John Lewis Stewart was born and raised in Windsor, his family owned Stewart's Flowers and Gifts and they lived on the 9th tee of Roseland Golf Course, where his love for the game was born. Stewart was a scratch golfer and was looking forward to his duties as Head Starter at Moss Ridge Golf Course in Ravenna, MI. After 40 years, he celebrated his first hole-in-one last year.
Stewart also loved radio, which became his career. He started the first college radio station at St.Clair Community College in Windsor. Stewart worked at the legendary CKLW before moving to the United States to join National Radio Hall of Famer Dick Purtan. He was the executive producer/Canadian sidekick that provided the best in-house laugh track for 30 years.
Stewart is survived by his wife Dana, his daughter Shannon, her husband Eric and their children Anna and Evan. His son Ryan, his wife Michelle and Ryan's children Haley and Brady. His stepdaughter Samantha, her husband Justin and their children Judah and Clara.
A celebration of life was held on April 8 in suburban Grand Rapids and was streamed live. In Stewart's honor, Art Vuolo preserved the event which includes the closing (edited version) of The Lord's Prayer as sung by NYC Police officer Daniel Rodrigues. The wonderful video montage was brilliantly edited together by Eric Harthen. WATCH HERE.