Richard H. Heist, 82, of Collegeville, a longtime broadcaster who launched a second career restoring antique clocks, died Friday, Nov. 28, of lung disease at his home.
He and his wife, Elaine Marshman Heist, had celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary on March 20.
Born in Bryn Mawr, Mr. Heist, known as "Dick," graduated from the Perkiomen School and Ursinus College. He studied criminal and civil law while serving as a magistrate for the Borough of Collegeville.
He then switched to broadcasting. Blessed with a deep, resonating voice, he broadcast for WBUD in Trenton and WMSC in Columbia, S.C. Mr. Heist was well-known in the Philadelphia suburbs for the auto races he broadcast from tracks in Hatfield, Sanatoga, Reading, and Allentown, as well as New Egypt and Vineland, N.J., his family said.
During the Korean War, he was chief announcer for the Far East Network Division of Armed Forces Radio, broadcasting from Nagoya, Japan.
In 1959, while working for WPAZ in Pottstown, Mr. Heist was hired by Equitable Publishing Co. in Lansdale to launch and manage a radio station, WNPV. He debuted the station with a broadcast in October 1960 and was credited with creating Comment Please, one of the area's first call-in radio programs.
In the late 1960s, Mr. Heist founded Heist Associates Advertising Agency, a firm that matched businesses with opportunities for advertising on local radio.
In 1976, Mr. Heist became operations manager for WBUX, a Doylestown radio station that had been acquired by the novelist James A. Michener and the football player and commentator Don Meredith.
He retired from broadcasting and advertising in 1978, but remained a member of the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia.
In retirement, he launched a second career, building on a longtime hobby. He opened the Iron Bridge Clock Shop in Collegeville, where he restored and repaired antique clocks. He stayed active working on clocks until just before his death.
Besides his wife, Mr. Heist is survived by sons Mark C. and Geoffrey; two granddaughters; and nieces and nephews.
A visitation from 10 to 10:45 a.m. Friday, Dec. 19, will be followed by an 11 a.m. memorial service at R.L. Williams Jr. Funeral Home Inc., 3440 Skippack Pike, Skippack. Burial was private.
Donations may be made to Save Our Boyertown Town Clock Foundation, Box 138, Boyertown, Pa. 19512, or via www.saveourtownclock.org.