Remembering Nelle Reagan : A Pioneer of Radio

February 7, 2020–9:00 a.m.


We are sad to have to report that our friend and colleague Nelle Reagan passed away Friday morning.

Nelle Reagan’s radio career began by accident in 1960 when Jim Mcree from WPLK in Rockmart, visited her family’s business on a sales call. Jim suggested Nelle had a good radio voice and wanted her to come by WPLK and do some women’s news.

She fell in love with radio and knew that was what she was meant to do. She won the Associated Press Award for Outstanding Broadcasting for Local News her first year. She later moved to a disc jockey format mornings and afternoons.

Nelle moved her family to Rome in 1967, to work at WROM AM/ FM. There she helped change the easy listening format to rock and roll. She later went to WLAQ AM as an air personality & assistant program director for 15 years.

In 1998 Nelle started “Talk Of The Town,” on WRGA AM, which has since become a staple for community news and information in Rome. She also served as the public affairs director for 7 properties owned by Rome Radio Partners LLC.

Nelle served on many community boards and loved that radio allowed her to tell the world about good and important things.

From Henderson and Sons Funeral Home

Mrs. Martha Linnell “Nelle” Holland Reagan, age 84, of Rome, GA, passed away Friday morning, February 7, 2020, at her residence.

Mrs. Reagan was born in Paulding County, GA on January 1, 1936, daughter of the late James Henry Holland and the late Lois Locklear Holland. She was also preceded in death by her husband of nearly 62 years, Junior LeBron Reagan on April 9, 2014, by a sister, Sarah Anne Holland Campbell, and by a son-in-law, Kenneth David Barton.

She began her radio career in 1960 with WPLK in Rockmart. Prior to her illness, she was the host for “Talk of the Town” on WRGA Radio. Nelle was honored many times during her illustrious career including being inducted into the Georgia Radio Hall of Fame in 2013. She was involved in many community programs and loved and promoted community activities in Rome and Floyd County. Mrs. Reagan was a member of West Rome United Methodist Church.

Survivors include her daughter, Lynne Reagan Barton, Rome; her son, James Lebron “Jimmy” Reagan, Sarasota, FL; her two grandsons, Nicholas Barton, Kansas City, KS, and David Barton, Rome; nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held on Monday, February 10, 2020, at 4 pm in the Chapel at Henderson & Sons Funeral Home, North Chapel. The Rev. Barbara Davis, the Rev. Michael Holt, and Mr. Randy Quick will officiate. Interment will follow at a later date in Rockmart Memory Gardens.

The family will receive friends at Henderson & Sons Funeral Home, North Chapel, on Monday from 1 pm until 3:30 pm.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Animal Rescue Foundation Rome-Floyd Inc., P. O. Box 682, Rome, GA 30162-0682.

Henderson & Sons Funeral Home, North Chapel, has charge of the funeral arrangements.

Just last week, WRGA aired an interview with Nelle where she looked back on her radio career.

You can view the video below.

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