Inductee Biography for LEW KING

Lew KingLew King- born New Kensington, PA 1915, died February 5, 1997 Phoenix, AZ.

The Lew King Rangers Show began in the late 1940’s as a weekly music talent show at the downtown Fox Theater in Phoenix. In 1947 “The Lew King Show” debuted on local Phoenix radio, showcasing local talent. Each Saturday morning an audition was held among performers to see which kid would be chosen for the radio show. Lew King and his sidekick, Chief Savumwampun, also made numerous personal appearances around the valley and encouraged kids to save their money.

After expanding to radio and at the peak of its success, the show aired nationally on over 400 radio stations around the country. Lew made the jump to television in 1950 on KPHO TV in Phoenix and at one point King was producing more live television shows than anyone in the nation. In 1974, former governor of Arizona, Raul Castro, named Lew King “Mr. Arizona” for his contributions to family entertainment, radio and television and his support for countless local charities and community benefits. During his career Lew King broadcasted from just about every theater, restaurant and shopping mall throughout The Valley of the Sun. From 1948 to 1973, more than 200,000 kids signed up to be a Ranger on Lew’s show. The title came with a badge, a membership card and a sworn obligation to be a good citizen. Many now famous entertainers like Tanya Tucker, Marty Robbins, Lynda Carter, Linda Day George, Vonda Kay Van Dyke and Wayne and Jerry Newton all got their start on one of Lew King’s shows.