Lee Warner, 1955-2015

The pickings are getting slim in Reno as another long-time broadcaster has passed away. Along with being a music teacher, wedding minister, he also was an in-demand drummer, playing with ‘Papa Clutch and the Shifters’ and ‘Route 66’ at a variety of events including Hot August Nights.

I had the pleasure of working with him at KOZZ in the summer of 1997.

On the air in northern Nevada for 25 years, Lee’s voice could heard on telephone messages, while “on hold”, and other phone greetings. He was also heard on overhead speaker announcements in the airport, casinos, pawn shops, gas stations and elevators.

In July 2012, Lee was hospitalized after having several seizures. Doctors found a golf ball size malignant brain tumor, which surgeon’s removed a few days later.

Unfortunately, I remember disagreeing with him vehemently when he penned a letter to the editor of the Reno Gazette-Journal in early May 2012. He got so angry with me that he hung up the phone on me.

We never spoke again – and for that I’m truly sorry.

He seemed to be on the mend during the past two and half years, but the brain cancer finally won out. Lee died on May 11, 2015 at the age of 60.

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