LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - If you’ve ever scanned through the radio in the Lake Area, odds are you’ve come across KELB 100.5, a non-commercial radio Christian radio station that broadcasts from Lake Charles.
Barry McCall was the man behind that, and on Monday, he died after falling from one of the radio towers.
Tommy Curtis and Andy Buckley were friends with McCall for more than 20 years. They said to know him, was to love him.
“He was the greatest combination of any man when you get down to what a man should be; as far as family, church and community," Curtis said.
While McCall was an electrician by trade, the church and his radio were his passions.
Buckley said McCall made the station non-commercial, so he’d have to fully trust it to God and any time anything needed to be fixed, he did it himself.
“They never had to call an air conditioner, contractor, electrician, plumber, a carpenter, a roofer," Buckley said.
McCall tragically died doing just that.
“The very morning this happened, he was out playing with his grandchildren in the yard," Curtis said. "A couple of hours later, he’s gone.”
The legacy McCall worked to build through his station will live on.
Parkview Baptist Church in Sulphur is a sister station to KELB.
Pastor Randall Chesson said they’ll continue to transmit the station for as long as it’s on the air.
“Our tower will stay here, and KELB 105 will be ready for them if they continue," Chesson said.
Pastor Chesson said in the 15 years he worked with McCall, he got to see the incredible man he was.
“I said, ‘Barry, I’m getting up in age. You want to preach my funeral? Miss Sue wants that,’" Chesson said. "He said, ‘well, Brother Randy, you’re going to live a long time.’ I said, ‘well, I’m 76. I don’t know, and Miss Sue wants me to be ready.’ So, that tells you how much we thought of him.”
Because McCall gave so much to build a strong foundation for the station and the community, Buckley said he doesn’t think it’s going anywhere, anytime soon.
“He would have told you, ‘this isn’t my radio station. this belongs to the Lord. And the Lord is responsible for keeping it going,’" Buckley said.
The funeral and visitation will be held at Emmanuel Baptist Church.
Visitation is Thursday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., the funeral service is at 11 a.m. on Friday.