Prominent Montreal broadcaster Lee Hambleton dies at 65

1/24/2005

 
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MONTREAL - The Montreal broadcasting community lost one of its most respected and best loved members Sunday with the death of Lee Hambleton, vice-president and general manager of Team 990, a Montreal all-sports radio statiomn reports the Montreal Gazette.

Hambleton, 65, a prominent figure on the Montreal TV and radio scene for nearly 40 years, died of cancer at his downtown home.

``Lee was a true gentleman, which is rare among all of us in this business,'' said Team 990 sports director Mitch Melnick, who had
worked for Hambleton the last four years. ``He was a great man, in spite of the fact that he was a Yankees fan.''

Melnick was struck by the fact Hambleton never complained about his fast-deteriorating condition and continued to work until a few
weeks ago.

``He was a treat to talk to, not just about sports. He was so knowledgeable about food, wine, literature, about all of life.''

Hambleton was born in Glenboro, Man., in 1939. The family moved to Kelso, Sask., population 36, where his father operated a grain elevator and Lee attended a one-room schoolhouse and went on to the University of Winnipeg.

After graduation, he became manager of a Safeway grocery store, then the chain's sales manager for the West.

A move to Regina led Hambleton into TV sales. In 1968, he was lured to Montreal to become sales manager at CFCF-TV. In the early
1980s, he was hired as vice-president and general manager of radio stations CHOM and CKGM. CHOM became part of the Standard Radio
operation a few years ago and CKGM morphed into Team 990.

Hambleton served on the board of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Foundation and was a McCord Museum trustee. He was president of the
Montreal branch of the International Wine and Food Society and later chairman of the society worldwide. He was also active with the
Opimian Society and the University Club, of which he was president in 2003.

Hambleton was a deeply religious man and had served on the management board for the Erskine and American Church.

``Everything Lee got involved with, he would end up rising to the top of, as cream always does,'' his wife, Janet Rankin-Hambleton,
said Sunday.

In addition to his wife, Hambleton is survived by son Anthony and daughter Ashley, stepsons Chris (Alison) and Jason (Erika) Guerrieri
and grandson Erik.




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