YANKTON - Radio pioneer Wynn Speece, known for more than six decades as "The Neighbor Lady," died Monday at a Yankton hospital at the age of 90.
As "The Neighbor Lady," Speece shared recipes, household tips and personal anecdotes with radio listeners.
Speece, a Marshalltown, Iowa, native, started at Yankton station WNAX in 1939. Her program started two years later and continued until December 2005.
In 64 years of broadcasting, Speece was welcomed into the homes of homemakers and farm wives throughout the five-state area covered by WNAX. She offered helpful household hints, and her signature was the recipes she shared with her listeners. Through the years, Speece has made numerous personal appearances, written a number of cookbooks and become a household icon in the area.
Speece began working at WNAX shortly after graduating from Drake University with a degree in theater.
"I was hired not as an air person but I did book work for two years," she said in a 2005 interview. "I think they used those two years to check on me, and then in 1941, they asked me to do a show about recipes and decided to call me the Neighbor Lady."
In the 2005 interview, Speece said her career was more of a joy than a job because of those who listened to her show.
"It was one of those lifetime things that was so satisfying and such a pleasure to do," she said. "I reached out to so many different people and made a lot of personal contacts. I went to different organizations and talked with people throughout the five-state area. It was very satisfying work through all the years."

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