Dick Summer 1935-2024

May 19th, 2024

Legendary radio personality, Dick Summer, was born on February 24, 1935 to Richard and Catherine Schwende in Brooklyn, New York, within earshot of the Brooklyn Dodger’s stadium that he was such a fan of.

The eldest of five children, he was recognized as a superior student throughout his career, particularly with vocabulary and his innate ability to tell a good story. He graduated as an exceptional scholar from Fordham University, majoring in psychology and communications.

He grew up with a great love for music. This began with his father, the church organist, choir master, voice coach and music teacher. He played several musical instruments himself. His passionate appreciation for the musical arts morphed into a dream of sharing music with the world on the air. This started with his admiration of listening to Willy B Williams on his transistor radio at a very young age.

The man behind the voice, Dick’s career spans from radio to TV personality. He famously hosted record hops and could be seen atop Merrills Hi Decker restaurant where they built a glassed-in studio above the popular restaurant where he first came up with “make it or break it” to help promote local bands a bit later used by Dave Letterman on his show. He was a pioneer of pre FM “underground radio” channels on WBZ Boston, a clear channel AM station bringing his show across the country with his Dick Summer Subway show, introducing new musicians like Tom Rush, Jose Feliciano and Harry Chapin to name a few. WNEW-FM’s first morning host when they switched to then FM termed “underground” music and WNBC AM  with his “Mouth vs Ear” show.  He was more than a DJ who spun records. He truly wanted to connect with his audience via stories, games and even a softball team that always won.

Dick has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame several times, the broadcaster Hall of Fame, and Music Museum of New England.

Established author and poet, he also took pride in owning his own therapy and hypnosis business in N.Y. called Quiet Decisions. Author of the “Lovin’ touch” poetry series, voice overs on radio and TV (you may remember the Binder & Binder law firm ads). It was during this phase of his life that he again reached out a supporting hand to those around him, connecting with the people of his beloved city and offering them a concerned ear and artful encouragement with his patented sense of humor as he had in his radio days. He has spent his whole life celebrating in the sharing of experiences, and frequently shared his belief that this sharing is part of what makes the human experience beautiful and worth living.

His great passion project in life was to become a pilot and he spent proudly decades flying his family and friends around in his Piper Cherokee, happily exploring many new destinations.

He departed peacefully surrounded by loving family on May 14 at the age 89. Please feel free to share memories and pictures on Facebook and Instagram with #DickSummer

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is what they should tell you in the drug store when nobody is looking…but they never do.

February 26th, 2024


Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is about “Artificial Smarts.”

February 25th, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is about some surprises

February 24th, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is about being “Joyful”

February 23rd, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is about something one of my bosses used to say. Yours too?

February 22nd, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is about the fact that sometimes what your doctor tells you isn’t what she/he really means.

February 21st, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is about tough questions. Think you’re tough enough to answer them?

February 20th, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is like saying wise guy things in front of very smart people. Try it.

February 19th, 2024

Today’s DickSummer.com/podcast is a Summer Stumper. All kinds of questions. Think you can get one right? Too bad you got the wrong one one wrong with your Ex.

February 18th, 2024