From: "VICKI GRENIER"
If you are, please reply to me and I'll give you more information about people who may be mutual friends/bosses. Vicki Grenier
From: "Tony Cucurullo"
Yes. I am his niece. I was very interested to read what you had to say about him because you had described very well what I thought of him too. He died of emphysema; suffocated to death. I was interested in hearing more about what you thought of him. More importantly, I wondered if you knew my dad, Vic Grenier over at WPIX? He also died of emphysema in 1997. I recognized many names of your co-workers at that time. Dad talked about all his friends in the business like they were family. For a number of years in the 60's I'd be sure to watch the rolling credits to see if I recognized any names. (That's when they rolled the credits slowly so you could actually read the names.) Charles' other brother Ted Grenier was in the business also but think he was over at ABC. Their fourth brother is the only surviving sibling. He was a mathematics college professor.
I miss the years my dad spent televising sports and eventually working for Howard Hughes in the startup of Hughes Sports Network. His last year was spent working at Entertainment Tonight. He formed a WPIX retirees group like your CBS retirees group only they did everything by snail mail.
I worked with Charles on a soap opera . He would drive me to work each day by picking me up at my home where I lived in Teaneck, NJ. On one occasion as we exited the Lincoln Tunnel into Manhattan, we passed the huge post office building and had to make a right turn onto 9th Ave; there was a 16 wheeler truck also making that turn, the truck cut too sharp, and drove his rear wheels over the top of Charlie's Volkswagen (Beetle Bug) I was the passenger, as I rapidly exited from my seat, I grabbed Charlie's clothes and literally pulled him up-and-out of his seat, and over the gears, and clear of the car, just as those huge tires crushed his little car like a pancake. "Do you know what your uncle Charles Grenier said to me?" In typical New York style thinking, "Tony! Are you going to sue me?" That's when I let go of the hold I had on him and dropped him into the street. But, I loved the guy. He was a very classy person, but, he had these strange prejudices about ethnic people. He would comment about Italians or others and say that, "The distance from the equator determined the amount of passion one exhibits on subjects."
We would talk about the old radio days in CBS. He knew my favorite Audio Engineer, Dick Stewart as I always called him. I was only the office boy for Major Bowes,1941-1943. I used to hang out in the theatre (that is now known as the Sullivan Theater) I loved it.. Charles was a trumpet player, so was Dick Stewart, and I play a little myself, so we had that in common. Charles also told me that he was responsible for that most famous concert in Carnegie hall, with the, 'Benny Goodman Band', where on that night they played the, song written by Louis Prima, 'Sing-Sing-Sing'. Apparently he used to moonlight there and did many of those concerts.
Vicki, Charlie, will be regarded by most technicians of that ers, as one of the premier Technical Directors at CBS-TV. "I do also." Perhaps your uncles would care to add to our history of this industry. I am sure they would know quite a bit about many of the techs that came from WPIX and Hughes (Charlie D'Onofio, Tony Ancona and others) so, please ask them for some tid bits. On behalf of CBS Retirees I hope I have helped refresh some thought about your Uncle Charles Grenier.
"Thanks for the memories."