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Jim Ameche in 1940.
Jim Ameche in 1940.

Jim Ameche (August 6, 1915[1] – February 4, 1983)[2] was a familiar voice on radio, including his role as radio's original Jack Armstrong on Jack Armstrong, the All-American Boy.[3]

Career


Born James Amici in Kenosha, Wisconsin,[4] when his elder brother, Don, left his position as the host and announcer for The Chase and Sanborn Hour in the early 1940s, Jim took over for the remainder of the show's run. He also was heard as mountie Jim West on ABC's Silver Eagle (1951–55). Other shows Ameche was heard on included Grand Hotel, Hollywood Playhouse, and Big Sister. In the 1940s, he had several programs on WGN radio in Chicago.[1]

He was heard on stations in Los Angeles and Palm Springs in the late 1950s and early 60s. For many years he was a popular local radio personality in the New York City area. By the late 1960s, he was working as an announcer on New York's WHN and the TV pitchman for a Longines Symphonette Society mail-order record album featuring clips of old-time radio broadcasts. In the 1960s he also read radio advertisements for Gibson wines. For many years, he was the afternoon announcer on WQXR, the classical radio station of The New York Times, and was a familiar and beloved voice. He also recorded numerous radio ads in Phoenix, Arizona in his later years.

Film


He portrayed Alexander Graham Bell in the 1957 film The Story of Mankind, the role his brother Don had played in the film biography of Bell in 1939.

Family


Jim Ameche was married to the former Betty A.Harris of Oak Park, Illinois. The couple had six children.[1] Alan Ameche, the professional football player, was a cousin of Jim.[5]

Death


Jim Ameche died February 4, 1983, of lung cancer at Tucson Medical Center at age 67.[6]

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