RIP: 1010 WINS News Editor Fred Hornby

Beloved morning drive alum was 76.

Among the many distinctions held by Fred Hornby was this rather incredible professional duality: respected pro wrestling historian and respected AM radio newsman.

Today, in the wake of Hornby’s passing Wednesday at the age of 76, Canadian website SLAM! Wrestling has put together some fond memories. From Steve Johnson and Greg Oliver’s tribute:

Even if you weren’t a wrestling fan in the New York area, chances are you knew Hornby’s name from his long career in radio news, especially as morning drive editor at WINS-AM. Former New York radio newsman Michael Kahn worked with Hornby and called him “a legend of the 1010 WINS all-news era.”

Kahn, who first met Hornby in the early 1980s, said his boss’s gruff exterior could put off some people but belied a gentle nature. “Personally, I’ll always remember Fred pacing around the newsroom at 90 Park, looking at the phone, waiting for [reporter] Paul Parker to call in, saying, ‘Come on Paul!’ “

There was no question who was in control when a WINS announcer intoned “Fred Hornby at the editor’s desk” at the top of a newscast, Kahn said. “He’d say, ‘You do this, you go there.’ … In some ways, I learned how to run a desk from him.”

It was 50 years ago that WINS, part of CBS New York, switched to the all-news format. RIP.