WSUZ-AM 800
Palatka

Original Call Letters: WSUZ

Originally Licensed: 1957

Original City of License: Palatka

Original Frequency: 800

Origin of Call Letters: 

Original Power: 1,000 watts daytime 

Original Location: 105 1/2 N. Second St.

Original Format: Country and Western


Network Affiliation(s):


Jones
Associated Press 
Mutual Broadcasting System  

Owner(s):

1957-Raymac, Inc.
1958-Raymond P. McMillan
1962-WSUZ, Inc.
1963-WSUZ, Inc. (George Duck Receiver)
1966-Wayne Bullock
1982-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)
1989-Palatka Broadcasting, Inc.
1990-Radio Palatka, Inc. ($180,000) 
1998-Radio Palatka, Inc.  ($250,000 for stock)
2010-Natkim Radio, LLC. ($425,000)


History Of  Call Letters and Formats:


WSUZ-1957-Country and Western
WSUZ-1982-Country and Western
WPLK-1990-Adult Standards  
WPLK-2003-Country
WPLK-2003-Oldies
WPLK-2006-Adult Standards  "The Best  Little Station In The Nation"

WSUZ History
Thanks to Marc Tyll for this history of  WSUZ
WSUZ-AM 800 signed on the air on February 14, 1947 as WWPF with 250 watts daytime only. The original format was MOR. In 1957, WWPF-AM 800 moved frequency to its current dial position of 1260khz with 1,000 watts day and 500 watts night. On May 1, 1957 the 800khz frequency returned to the air under the call letters WSUZ.. The WSUZ tower was erected in East Palatka, just across the Saint Johns river at the corner of Highway 100 and old Saint Augustine Road. The original WSUZ format was C&W (known as Country and Western).  After a series of station ownership changes, the call letters switched to WPLK (originally the WPLK call letters were assigned to WZOT-AM 1220, Rockmart, Georgia on July 13th, 1990, followed by a few MOR format adjustments until the format eventually became "Music of Your Life" which it continues to program throughout Palatka and Putnum County.

In July of 1960, WSUZ owner Ray McMillan announced that his station would be the first station in the state to adopt automation. From an article In the Daytona Beach Morning Journal: "Under the system, $18,000 worth of electronic equipment  including an imposing array of tape recorders, phonographs, dials and buttons and other components control the station's programming during the entire broadcast day." 


From Raymond Meyers: 
"The station (studio and transmitter) were located in East Palatka across the St. Johns River from Palatka off highway 17.  The station had acquired a model house from a bankrupted developer to house the station.  It was only a shell when they acquired it and moved it to the site of the tower.  The building was divided into four rooms with a hall down the middle ending in the bathroom.  To the left was the control room in the front and the transmitter room in the rear.  Transmitter was a one kilowatt Collins 20V.  To the right was the office in the front and a room being used to store stuff in the rear and also had an unused Schafer Automation system.  The station operated daytime on 800KHz with 1KW power non directional.  Mutual was the network. I was with Neal Owings that had been an account executive at WMIE in Miami, a station owned by E.D. Rivers.  Neal was in the process of buying the station and hired me as an advance man to go to the station.  When Owings entered into the closing with McMillan, Owings discovered that McMillan owed everybody in town to the tune of $50,000.  Owings bowed out of the closing and McMillan left town leaving the station in bankruptcy with George Duck the custodian.  About six months later, it was bought by two men". 


1982-1988 Don Sports, Jr. tells about the station when it was owned by his family.
"...My family (Don Sports Sr. and Jr. of Claxton GA) owned WSUZ from 1982 to 1988.  Here is some information about the station during those years.   We added the complete line-up of NASCAR, FSU and University of Miami Football and selected UGA games, carried Palatka Baseball from the Azalea Bowl, added night operation, and covered local elections the night in 1987 the day we got night authorization.  You should have seen Mary Makee’s eyes when we arrived to cover the election as the former daytime only station.  We sold the station to a young man who let the station go dark about 120 days after he bought it.  We then sold the station to Lowell Register of Perry GA, a long time associate of my father, Don Sports Sr..  Don Sr. passed away suddenly in 2006.  Sports sold his AM/FM radio-station, WCLA in Claxton, in 1997.  I am Don Sports Jr. the General Manager for most of the 80’s.  I am now a sales manager at 13 WMAZ, Macon GA a very CBS affiliate (Gannett).  My friend Dodie Cantrell in the current GM of the two Gannett TV stations in Jacksonville.  She is from Warner Robins and was news director of WMAZ and GM before getting the promotion to Jacksonville. I still talk to Ron Dennis.  Names to remember from that time period include Tammy Vincent.  She still lives in Palatka and did mornings, Brenda Poole who was a salesperson and General Manager, Judy Markey who sold advertising.  Judy worked at the Palatka Daily News as late as 2009, my last visit to the Bass Capital.  The late Butch Prevatt helped us with news after he left WIYD(-AM 1260) and before he went to the Palatka Daily News.   He was an excellent news hound   We had a lot of fun and did a good job in the community, but the billing did not come as we expected.  At that time we thought we could get a docket 80/90 FM to put with the AM.  That would have been a money maker and would have probably kept me in Palatka.  A quirky as Palatka is, I rather enjoyed it. I hated the call letters.  We called (it) " 800 WSUZ".  Previous idiots had branded it "Suzie".  Saying " Suzie" as a reference to the radio station on the air was a firing offense on my watch.       


Names In WSUZ History

Wayne ("The Deacon") Bullock-1957-Partner/Commercial Manager-Radio Station WSUZ/1966-Owner /General Manager-Radio Station WSUZ

Herbert Strickland-1957-Partner/Chief Engineer-Radio Station WSUZ

Raymond P. McMillan-1958-Owner/1960-President/General Manager/News Director

George Duck-1958-Chief Engineer/1960-Promotions Manager/Chief Engineer-Raymond McMillan Ownership/1961-Station Manager/Chief Engineer/1963-President-WSUZ, Inc./1970-Chief Engineer-Wayne Bullock Ownership/1989-2005-Music Director/News Director/Host of "Swap Shop"-Radio Palatka, Inc.  In Memory

Robert E. James-1958-News Director/1959-Commercial Manager/Chief Engineer-Raymond McMillan Ownership
Betty Jane McMillan-1958-Program Director/1960-Commercial Manager-Raymond McMillan Ownership
Charles Elston-1959-Program Director-Raymond McMillan Ownership
Leroy Hood-1960-Program Director-Raymond McMillan Ownership
Bob Taylor (Ray Meyers)-1961-1961-Raymond P. McMillan Ownership
Neal C. Owings-1962-President-WSUZ, Inc.
Raymond P. McMillan-1963-Partner

Elliot Bullock-1966-Program Director-Wayne Bullock Ownership

C. L. Kirkland-1966-News Director-Wayne Bullock Ownership

Wayne Bullock-1964-Partner/Commercial Manager-Radio Station WSUZ/1966-Owner/General Manager/1990-General Manager/Sales Manager /1998-President/General Manager/General Sales Manager-Radio Palatka, Inc.
Herbert Strickland-1964-Partner/Chief Engineer-Radio Station WSUZ
Wayne Elliott-1968-Commercial Manager-Wayne Bullock Ownership
Evelyn Johnson-1968-Program Director-Wayne Bullock Ownership
Cliff Richard-1968-Promotion Manager-Wayne Bullock Ownership
Dennis Read-1968-News Director-Wayne Bullock Ownership
Elliott Bullock-1970-Program Director-Wayne Bullock Ownership
C.L.Kirkland-1970-News Director-Wayne Bullock Ownership
Don Sports Sr.-1982-President-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)  In Memory
Don Sports Jr.-1982-General Manager/General Sales Manager/News Director-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)
Christian North-1982-Music Director-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)
Butch Prevatt-News-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)    In Memory
Brenda Poole-General Manager/Sales-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)
Judy Markey-Sales-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)
Jerry Smith-1982-Chief Engineer-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)
Tammy Vincent-1982-Mornings-Don Sports Radio Group (WSUZ, Inc.)

Billy Meetze


Other Programs In WSUZ History

NASCAR
FSU Football  
University of Miami Football  
University of Georgia Football
Palatka Baseball

Atlanta Braves Baseball


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