1951 Kansas City Flood


Entire News of the World Broadcast

The News of the World with Leon Pierson includes news of the flooding in the Midwest and WDAF local news coverage. World news includes the Korean War, Josephine Baker segregation case, Margaret Truman's return from Europe, and more.

Select clips featuring Walt Bodine:

Local breaking flood news. Walt Bodine Reporting on the flood. Walt Bodine Reporting on the flood. Local flood coverage.
Walt Bodine reporting. Local flood coverage. Bodine reporting on President Truman's visit. Truman's 800-mile aerial tour of flooded areas.

Library Resources

External Resources

  • Flood Photos
    Missouri Valley Special Collections, KC Public Library

1957 Ruskin Heights Tornado


Diary of a Disaster

Produced by WDAF News and written, directed and narrated by Walt Bodine, this radio documentary chronicles the 1957 Ruskin Heights Tornado.

Part 1 - The Birth of a Killer Part 2 - The Killer Strikes Part 3 - Aftermath

20th Anniversary of the Kansas City Disaster

This is a KMBZ News special report that takes a look back at the 1957 Ruskin Heights Tornado. The narrator is Scott Kingore and Walt Bodine was interviewed.

The Ruskin Heights Tornado

Library Resources

External Resources

  • Photos
    Missouri Valley Special Collections, KC Public Library


In 1960, while at WDAF, Walt and his co-host Jean Glenn brought guests such as Robert F. Kennedy, Werner Von Braun, and James Michener to Bretton's Restaurant in Downtown Kansas City.

Robert Kennedy

Interview with Robert Kennedy

Robert Kennedy discusses his brother John F. Kennedy’s campaign for President and the various issues of the 1960 campaign. Richard W. Bolling, the Missouri Democratic Representative to U.S. Congress between 1949-1983, is also a guest. Fall 1960.

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Interview with Sander Vanocur

Sander Vanocur, NBC White House Correspondent, discusses John F. Kennedy's presidency and assassination, as well as Lyndon Johnson's presidency.

Buddy Rich

Interview with Buddy Rich

Buddy Rich talks about jazz and other musicians Lawrence Welk, Guy Lombardo, Stan Kenton, Count Basie, Frank Sinatra, and more.

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Interview with Dr. Werner Von Braun

Werner Von Braun, Director of the Marshall Space Flight Center, discusses uses for rockets including military, space travel and visiting the moon. He also talks of his youth and his coming to America.

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Interview with James Michener

Michener is promoting his book Hawaii and speaks about the U.S. relations in Asia. He also discusses the division of India and Pakistan and United States race relations.



The Many Faces of Insight

During the same period of time Walt was working on Conversation, Walt and Bill Leeds started a weekly primetime talk show on WDAF-TV. Their guests included Dean Acheson, Chester Bowles, David Susskind, Thomas Hart Benton, Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr., Father Dismas Clark, Chet Huntley, and more.

1968 Kansas City Riots


Night Beat Broadcast Covering Riots

The recording is from Thursday, April 11, the third day of the 1968 Kansas City riots (April 9-11). Walt speaks with Jackson County Sheriff Arvid Owsley, Kansas City Mayor Ilus Davis and Jackson County Prosecutor Joe Teasdale. There is also a statement from Fred "The Hammer" Williamson.

Library Resources

External Resources

Christine Craft Lawsuit

Christine Craft

Interview & Listener Call-in

There is a brief interview with Christine Craft, concerning her age and sexual discrimination lawsuit against Metromedia. Craft was demoted from her position as news anchor to reporter. The interview is followed by listener call-in regarding her lawsuit. Summer 1981.

Library Resources

Ronald Reagan Assassination Attempt


Listener Reaction & Call-in

James McKinley, Ph.D., UMKC professor and author of Assassination in America, discusses the assassination attempt on Ronald Reagan, followed by listener reaction and call-in. This was broadcast on March 30, 1981, on KMBZ.

30 Years of Talk Radio

30 Years of Talk Radio

Walt and his guests look back on his 30 years doing talk radio. There are clips of past broadcasts, and Walt and his guests talk about the business of broadcasting in Kansas City, including the evening someone brings a lion into the studio. November 2, 1989.

A Look Back, Part 1 A Look Back, Part 2

Walt, The Humorist

Walt the Humorist

Walt Spoofs the Talk Show

Walt and his cohorts have a little fun with the talk show genre.

Audio credits: Walt Bodine Collection, Marr Sound Archives, UMKC Miller Nichols Library

Image credits: Walt Bodine Collection, LaBudde Special Collections, UMKC Miller Nichols Library, except:

  • 1951 flood: L. Perry Cookingham Collection, LaBudde Special Collections
  • 1968 riot: 1968 Riot Collection, LaBudde Special Collections
  • Tornado damage: Missouri Valley Special Collections, KCMO Public Library
  • President Reagan: Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
  • Newspaper: Kansas City Times