Knoxville legend Bobby Denton remembered during radio tribute

Knoxville legend Bobby Denton remembered during radio tribute

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Bobby Denton was a force at WIVK for more than four decades. (source: WIVK) Bobby Denton was a force at WIVK for more than four decades. (source: WIVK)
Bobby Denton hired and mentored some of WIVK's biggest personalities, and they gathered to remember him and say thank you. Bobby Denton hired and mentored some of WIVK's biggest personalities, and they gathered to remember him and say thank you.

By DREW GARDNER
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Vols fans continued to remember Bobby Denton, known as the voice of Neyland Stadium, in a special tribute Thursday morning.

Denton, the iconic public address announcer for UT football for almost 50 years, died Wednesday morning at the age of 73.

4/9/2014 Related story: Voice of Neyland Stadium Bobby Denton dies, funeral details set

Those who knew him best gathered for a one hour radio tribute.

Bobby Denton was a force at WIVK for more than four decades. He hired and mentored some of its biggest personalities, and they gathered to remember him and say thank you.

4/9/2014 Related story: Knoxville radio personalities remember Bobby Denton

Denton first started at WIVK on air as a DJ, but it wasn't long before he was calling the shots.

"We have never known a world without him and he hired us, and he believed in us at some point during our career," said Andy Ritchie, host of WIVK's "Andy & Allison and the Morning Crew."

That's also true of everyone in the studio Thursday morning, each with their own personal stories about Denton.

"He had a cigar going. He had a phone in one hand. He's cueing up records," said Bob Kesling, describing Denton at work.

It wasn't just radio talent Denton helped either. He also lended a hand to several country music performers when their stars were still rising.

His friend Dolly Parton was one of them.

"He was always great to help new artists and help people. He was very very helpful to me in my early years. People felt very warm and connected to him, because he was just a personable human being," said Parton, who called into the program.

Kenny Chesney grew up listening to Bobby Denton in East Tennessee, and eventually became friends with him as he broke into the country music scene.

"I didn't realize how much of an icon Bobby Denton was in our business until I went on the road and met a lot of people in our business that really respected him and loved him," said Chesney, who also called in.

No one loved him more than his family. Denton's nephew Ron Morton also stopped by the studio to remember his uncle.

"I don't think anybody realized how much he had a hold of us, but man, he just took a big chunk of us," he said.

Denton also left behind a lot of laughs,  memories, and a legacy that won't soon be forgotten.

The Denton family is asking everyone who has a UT home flag to fly it on Monday in Denton's memory.

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