CWRU Links
Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

PENFOUND, RONALD A. (CAPTAIN PENNY)

PENFOUND, RONALD A. (CAPTAIN PENNY)

PENFOUND, RONALD A. (CAPTAIN PENNY) (28 Jan. 1927-16 Sept. 1974), who worked in TELEVISION and RADIO, entertained Cleveland children in the Captain Penny Show on WEWS from 2 March 1955 through 4 Sept. 1971. Penfound was born in Elyria, OH, to Archie and Marjorie (Saywell) Penfound. He first entered Kenyon College (OH), planning to become an Episcopal priest, but then transferred to study broadcasting at the University of Denver. He worked as a radio announcer in Lamar, CO, while attending school (1950). Penfound announced for KVOD in Denver before returning to Elyria as news and sports director at WEOL radio. He also worked at Cleveland radio station WERE as an announcer and salesman before beginning his long affiliation with WEWS-TV on 26 April 1953 as a sports announcer and floorman. The Captain Penny Show appeared at various times over the years--in the morning, at noon, and in the late afternoon. Dressed as a railroad engineer, Captain Penny featured cartoons, "Little Rascals" and "Three Stooges" shorts, and live features. At a show's end, Captain Penny's closing advice was, "You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can't fool Mom." After 1971, Penfound served as weekend weatherman and staff announcer at WEWS. He also announced for the CLEVELAND INDIANS (1969-72). Penfound left Cleveland in 1972, moving first to New Hampshire, then to Florida (1973), continuing in broadcasting. Penfound married Gail Gilmore in 1951 and had one child, Amy. Their marriage ended in divorce in 1959. He then married Phyllis Yoder Hunter (d. 1964) in 1960. They had two children, Tracy and Matthew. In 1967, Penfound married Jo Ann Dudas and had two children, Julie and Samantha. He died in Naples, FL.