The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
Community remembers Brian Strobel
Latest reaction from the community
“The dooby-dos, that was his creation. Even today, when I go somewhere, and people ask `Where did you work, and I say, `WFLS,’ they ask, `Oh, did you know Brian?’ ”
J. William Poole, former WFLS general manager
“He was 100 percent invested in the mission of the [Salvation] Army. This is a great loss for us; we are saddened to the core. We’ve lost a warrior in the fight. I don’t think you can replace Brian Strobel.”
Salvation Army Capt. Jamie Satterlee
“He Really did care”
Photo gallery: Brian Strobel: WFLS icon
Rob Hedelt: FLS columnist remembers his friend
2008 related story: Friends, fans mark Strobel’s last day on WFLS
2007 letter: Brian Strobel always knew what was important–people
“He was professional and caring. He was a people person. When he did a remote, he’d remember people who called in.”
Frank Hammon, WFLS news director
“I think everyone who ever met Brian will remember his sense of humor and natural friendliness. Even a brief conversation with Brian could brighten anyone’s day.”
Lee Woolf, former Free Lance-Star sports editor and friend
“Brian was the morning guy and I was the afternoon guy. He gave every effort nothing less than 1,000 percent. You never heard anybody talk negatively about him.”
Mike Vincent, former WFLS colleague
Late this morning, Del. Bobby Orrock asked the House in Virginia’s General Assembly to adjourn today in memory of Brian Strobel.
Penny Wack worked with Brian Strobel at WFLS for 13 years and at Thunder 104.5 for the past few years.
Strobel, a local radio icon on WFLS for three decades, was killed Wednesday when he was struck by a vehicle while walking a dog.
The incident occurred at about 5 p.m. in the Kingswood subdivision, off Harrison Road in Spotsylvania County.
“It’s just heartbreaking,” she said of the loss. Even after working together for all those years, she said Strobel still had an endearing formalness about him. When he’d call her, for instance, he’d start off by saying: “Hi, this is Brian. We work together on the radio.”
“He was just a very polite person,” she said. “Even if there’s a rude caller, he would thank them for the call.”
Above all, Wack said, Strobel’s loss hits especially hard because of his sincere interest in people and the community.
“He was grass roots. He was on every board in this town,” she said. “He did that [Salvation Army] shoe fund for 30 years. He really was part of it.”
Wack said it wouldn’t be unusual for Strobel to meet with a sick child at the child’s invitation, for instance, and then weeks later initiate lunch again with the child – not as part of a radio promotion, but because he cared.
No invitation was too small for Strobel.
“There would be like the tiniest little town in the area would call and say, ‘We’re having a Fourth of July Parade,’ and daggone if he didn’t go. He didn’t take anything for granted. He went to everything in this community.
“He really did care.”
On Strobel’s last WFLS show on New Year’s Eve of 2007, he began at his customary 5 a.m., then offered his trademark “Dooby Doo” at 6.
He closed at 10 a.m., his voice cracking with emotion, by saying: “You listeners are the best in the world. You’ve been just like family to me. I love all of you. Thanks for listening.”