Obituary: Michael Andrews / Host of 'Greek Hour' radio show for nearly 40 years

May 24, 1925 - March 31, 2014

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Michael Andrews, a retired TV producer who for decades also hosted "The Greek Hour of Pittsburgh" radio show with his wife, Aliki, died Monday at 88.

Aliki, 80, still hosts the weekly show on WEDO, McKeesport, but for nearly 40 years the pair were on the air together every Sunday.

"They were really the Greek voice of Pittsburgh," said their son, Kimon Andreos of Point Breeze. "Anyone who is in the Greek community knows them as Aliki and Mike."

Mr. Andreos, 49, who uses the original Greek family name, said he's known around town less for who he is than for who his parents are.

"They say, 'Oh, you're Mike and Aliki's son,'" he said. "They had a big influence in the Greek community because of the radio program."

Mr. Andrews, who retired from WIIC-TV in the late 1980s, was still producing the Sunday show -- a combination of music, announcements and commercials -- from his home in Bethel Park as recently as last month.

Born in 1925, the son of Greek parents, Mr. Andrews grew up in Homewood. He lost his mother at 14 and was raised by his father, graduating from Westinghouse High School and later moving to the North Side.

He was drafted at 25 into the Army in 1950 during the Korean War, but he never had to fight. During basic training, someone asked if anyone in his unit could type; Mr. Andrews said yes and ended up spending the war in San Francisco as a stenographer.

"He felt that he lucked out," said his son.

After the war he wrote scripts for radio programs and joined WIIC-TV, now WPXI, when it went on the air in 1957. He worked with Channel 11 fixture Bill Cardille and others on such programs as "Chiller Theater" and "Romper Room," and also produced and directed news broadcasts in the 1960s and '70s.

Mr. Andrews met his wife in 1960 on a vacation to the Greek island of Samos, the homeland of his parents; they married and he brought her to Pittsburgh.

In 1973, he suggested she and a friend take over a local Greek radio program when the host moved to Florida. After a year, Mr. Andrews and Aliki began hosting the show together, with Mr. Andrews addressing the audience in English and Aliki in Greek.

The program moved around to different studios, from WPLW-AM in Carnegie to WPIT and then WEDO. The pair played a lot of Greek music and in more recent years used the Internet to provide listeners with news from Greece.

In his spare time, Mr. Andrews devoted time to his family and his church, Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Church in Mt. Lebanon.

He especially enjoyed traveling with his wife. Nearly every year, the pair returned to Greece, where the family owns a beach house.

Besides his wife and son, Mr. Andrews is survived by another son, George of the South Side.

Visitation is from 2 to 4 and 6 to 9 p.m. today at Beinhauer Mortuary in Dormont with a Trisagion service at 8 p.m. Additional visitation will be Thursday from 10 a.m. until the 11 a.m. funeral service at Holy Cross. Mr. Andrews will be buried at Homewood Cemetery.


Torsten Ove: tove@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1510.


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