Jack Hyland

At age 79, Broadcast Pioneers member Jack Hyland has passed away in his sleep from a stroke on Thursday morning, January 27, 2005.

Jack Hyland was a legend at the WFIL stations. The photo above was from a 1969 WFIL Publication called "Who's Who at 4100." In that publication, Jack Hyland was listed as the Radio News Director.

His career at WFIL spanned almost a half-century. In the early days of his vocation, Jack was very much the key guy at WFIL in the promotions department. Publicity and Public Relations was something that Jack loved and he had great skill.

He was also a talented writer and did many different duties over his WFIL years. He wrote and produced an award-winning documentary for WFIL entitled, “Man Made Heart,” which was syndicated throughout the nation.

Former Broadcast Pioneers Person of the Year, Lew Klein said that Jack had a great sense of humor. Marie Pantarelli, Vice-President of the Broadcast Pioneers mentioned that Jack Hyland was a mainstay at the station. "He was a true and loyal person." She said that she vividly remembers Jack's bright red hair. Marie also mused that Hyland was "a pet" of the man who hired him, Jack Steck, our organization's fourth president.

Klein also stated that Hyland was very much involved with publicity and promotion with Dick Clark including some of Dick's books and all the Bandstand Yearbooks. "He worked very closely with Dick Clark," Lew reminisced. (Lew Klein is on the Board of Directors, by the way, of Dick Clark Productions).

Every year, the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia holds its annual scholarship fund-raising banquet where we honor new inductees into our Hall of Fame. We also honor the Person of the Year. For a decade, Jack Hyland wrote the scripts for the video bios shown at those occasions. On Friday, November 16, 2007, Broadcast Pioneers member Jack Hyland was inducted into the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia's "Hall of Fame." Jack had also served several terms on our Board of Governors, now called the Board of Directors.

After being graduated from West Catholic High School for Boys, Jack fought in the Second World War. He was in the U.S. Army, 84th infantry division and saw action at the Battle of the Bulge in late 1944 and early 1945. Wounded while serving his country, Jack was awarded the Purple Heart. He was also awarded the Bronze Star, for heroic or meritorious achievement of service with operations against an opposing armed force.

After the service, Hyland received his bachelor’s degree from St. Joseph’s College. Jack and his wife, Patricia were loving parents to three children. In his later years, he was a volunteer at the Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital in Darby, Pennsylvania.

Jack Hyland left WFIL Radio in 1982 when he went to Independence Blue Cross in the public relations department. Though Jack was in retirement in 1997, he stayed very busy. He undertook handling part of the promotion for the Channel 6's "50th Anniversary" broadcast held in September 1997.

On March 18, 1952, WFIL Radio aired a program called "The Theme is 30." It celebrated the 30th anniversary of WFI Radio (a forerunner of WFIL) going on the air. Joe Novenson was the narrator. The show was compiled and edited by Jack Hyland.

Listen to "The Theme is 30"

From the official archives of the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia
Photo originally donated by Joel Perlish, Neil Harvey's son
Text researched and written by Broadcast Pioneers member Gerry Wilkinson
© 2005, All Rights Reserved

The e-mail address of the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia is pioneers@broadcastpioneers.com