Legendary Salt Lake City Broadcaster Passes


Albert (Gene) Guthrie, of Grantsville, Utah, has died of natural causes. He was 83. At the age of just 15, Guthrie found his love for radio and regularly rode the train to El Paso where he worked at KHEY AM while attending high school.

While raising a young family Gene worked his way through college by working in radio.

After a successful early career working for Texas and Arizona radio stations, Guthrie and his family moved to Salt Lake City where Guthrie owned Utah’s legendary country station 1550 AM KRGO and 107.9 KRGO FM for nearly three decades.

Guthrie became a pioneer in Utah radio launching the first AM stereo broadcast technology and structuring the very first LMA in the Wasatch Front with an agreement he forged to allow KZHT radio to lease time from 1550 AM in 1991.

The family will hold private services and ask in lieu of flowers that people remember Gene by listening and supporting their local radio stations, wherever they may be.


  1. Gene was an “original”. He always “pushed” the envelop and asked “why”. He
    was one of the original founders of the SALT LAKE MARKET RADIO BROADCASTERS ASSOCIATION and worked hard to create the annual radio Christmas Party that was held
    for many years.

    There are many of us who worked for 1550 KRGO at some point in our career and are
    better broadcasters from learning a thing or two from Gene.

    Thanks Gene….and condolences to His family. He left his mark!

    Craig Hanson

  2. RIP Gene…you were always open to new ideas but stubborn in your own beliefs.

    Gene was one of the first to get the FCC to approve a lower power night time signal for daytimers like KRGO. It was 10K days and 500 watts at night…which wasn’t adequate but at least they weren’t signing off at 4:15 in December.

    That scrappy little building out on West 21st was a fun place in my short time there. Never forget the great Tuesday jingles…ONE-DOUBLE-FIVE-OHH, Country Kargo!


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