ROCKY MOUNT, Va. (WDBJ7) WTIY is celebrating 60 years on the air in Franklin County, and the man who’s been at the station since day one is still showing up to work.
Bill Jefferson started at WYTI when he was 28-years-old, and 60 years later, he’s the heart and soul of the station.
“I came to work the first day the station went on the air. And I worked for Les Williams and SL Goodman. I did that for 14 years, and then I got the station in 1971. And I’m still here,” Jefferson said.
Jefferson works with one of his old buddies, and his daughter, Susan, to put real country music on the radio.
“We have a good audience for, to be a local station, unusually I think. People appreciate that, because the coverage we have, we like that kind of music, that’s what we try to please them with,” said Jesse Ramsey, who’s been working for WYTI for almost 24 years.
And they program everything themselves, something that Jefferson says no one else in the area does anymore. Ramsey says it’s something the community really enjoys.
“We’ve had a lot of support from the community and as we’ve kind of go (…) they appreciate it, and they let us know that,” Ramsey said.
And over the last 60 years, Jefferson says the town has changed dramatically, and WYTI has gone through some changes as well, airing only on AM for 59 years, to now simulcasting on FM and streaming online. But the playlist won't change.
“Just as long as it’s country, I mean real country I’m talking about,” Jefferson said.