Bill Merchant worked on WTRU, Muskegon, WGRD, WLAV and WZZM-FM [now WLHT] in GR. Plus he did weather and other booth announcing on TV13. Bill Merchant gave up the Bozo character because he became allergic to the makeup. He left GR for NY. But part of his family still lives here. Bill died several years ago. Dick Richards took over as Bozo and continues to make periodic appearances as Bozo. Both nice guys. – John Russo.
Bill was the best. I remember him telling me about going to actual “Clown School” just before he started as Bozo. Ron White
Yes he had to go to Chicago to learn from Larry Harmon the creator and original Bozo. Karyn Merchant Streeting
Dick Richards started out as ringmaster for Bill Merchant’s Bozo, then took over as Bozo when Mr. Merchant developed an allergy to the clown makeup, and had to bow out of the role. Richards was Bozo (and still may be) for the longest tenure for sure, but Bill Merchant’s being the first, and his unique talent for Bozo and so many other things Radio, TV, and Emcee made him a special man. Matt Weber