Chicago radio personality Herb Kent remembered by fans, friends

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Herb Kent died Sat., Oct. 22, 2016. He was 88. (WLS)

Tributes continued Monday for legendary Chicago radio personality Herb Kent, who died over the weekend at age 88.

Known as "The Cool Gent," Kent was the longest-running DJ in the history of radio.

He also saw Chicago though good times and bad.

"During the '68 riots, Herb Kent was on the air round the clock, and he told the young people to get a grip and they stopped the rioting," said Perri Small, a WVON talk show host.

Most recently, Kent could be heard on V103. With guests coming through for the Battle of the Bands, he didn't retire and didn't stop.

He hosted his show Saturday morning. The station was notified Saturday evening that he had passed.

His friend Joe Soto filled in for Kent Sunday morning.

"I told Herb many times, he was my radio hero, he was my idol. I grew up listening to Herb Kent," Soto said.

WATCH: Joe Soto remembers his friend Herb Kent
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DJ Joe Soto remembered his colleague, the late Herb Kent.


Kent is credited with launching the careers of R&B greats like the Temptations, Curtis Mayfield and Smokey Robison. He was also the reason The Chi-Lites stayed together.

On Monday, Marshall Thompson, of the Chi-Lites, recalled Kent was a one-man promotional tour, selling records for popular bands across from DuSable High School. They called the corner "Times Square."

"He had a packed house. Everybody at DuSable High School was at 'Times Square,'" Thompson said.

Thompson said Kent had an amazing sense for music and the music business, but was also a dear friend.

"One of the best friends ever, in my life, Mr. Kent," Thompson said.

A funeral will be held 10 a.m. Saturday at House of Hope, 752 E. 114th St., Chicago. A wake will be held at 9 a.m.

A viewing is scheduled for 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday at Robey Park Manor Funeral Home, 2510 Chicago Rd., Chicago Heights.
Related Topics:
entertainmentradiomusicobituaryChicago - Bronzeville
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