Puget Sound Radio thanks Pat Holiday for sharing this tribute for Rosalie Trombley
I knew this day would come at some point yet still I’m pretty much at a loss for words. Been trying to figure out what to write all day.
There’s only a few people that really, really, make an impact on your life. Definitely you parents, sometimes a friend teacher or mentor, and if you’re lucky….very lucky, someone who I became lifelong friends with that passed away yesterday. Rosalie Trombley.
There’s been and will be a huge amount written and said about her and her career over the coming days and weeks. ALL OF IT, immensely deserved. Flat out, she had no peers. And I doubt, as time keeps ticking, she ever will.
But I think, I hope, that for that small bunch of us who worked, laughed, cried, competed, aged, grew up, and simply tried to be as good as we all could be in that crazy station that was the Big 8, Rosalie’s accomplishments that everyone else will deservedly praise will pale in comparison to how great it was to have her as a friend.
She was a tough as nails, fun cheerful and outgoing as a room full of drunk comedians, and as compassionate loyal and protective of her friends like a momma bear with her cubs. Get in between those at your peril.
I choose to remember the amazing mentoring and fun times she afforded a young kid that she didn’t know at first and certainly didn’t need to take under her wing….but she did.
I learned more from her about radio and music and people’s listening and buying musical tastes than any 40 Harvard professors could teach another about physics or law or whatever.
When I returned to Canada from NYC and needed someone to sponsor me back in for immigration. She’s the one who signed the papers and vouched for me. She’s the reason I’m here. Literally. She’s basically the reason that whatever you know or think of me the radio guy….it pretty much starts with her.
Like I said. Impact.
I’ve been reading the news stories and revisiting much of the online videos about her. It’s easy to get the impression that she was sort of like an aloof super powerful radio mogul and everything one would envision that goes with that phrase. Except…she was anything but that.
I would hate for you to think that. SHE would hate for you to think that.
Despite all that power, recognition, and accolades, she didn’t pull the power chain. She lived a very simple life with her kids and dog Fritz, (Actually there were many Fritz’s) yet was as comfortable as could be in the company of millionaires, movie and mega recording stars, record label Presidents, or Chrysler factory line workers. Didn’t matter. Zero hierarchy. That’s a rare quality.
But then Rosie was a rare individual.
For those of us who grew up daily with her, or interacted with her, or simply met her along the way and felt how nice a person she was…..consider yourself lucky.
There’s just not many people around that fill all those boxes like she instinctively did.
Luckily it’s easy to remember her loud boisterous laugh, wild waiving of her hands when she got excited about anything, and the best part….the angry truck driver the spilled out on more than a few occasions when someone or some thing pissed her off. Yet even the appearance of the “truck driver” ultimately end up as big laughs.
Such was a day in the music library of Rosalie Trombley.