Toledo media figure Joe Rychnovsky dies at 49

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  • Sports anchor Joe Rychnovsky passed away today after battling a rare and aggressive cancer.

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    Sportscasters Ed Bellner, left, and Joe Rychnovsky cover the 4th and Goal Bowl at The University of Toledo in November of 2016.

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Joe Rychnovsky, one of the most popular media figures in the Toledo market, passed away Thursday at his home. Rychnovsky was 49 and had been battling a rare and aggressive cancer.

The Missouri native was small in stature but was known throughout the community for his big heart and the way he passionately immersed himself in the stories he covered. He had a very unique, folksy and occasionally self-deprecating style, something that endeared him to his audience and the people he met along the way.

“Nobody did it the way he did it,” said Tom Cole, who worked with Rychnovsky at BCSN. “And because Joe had fun and he made it fun for everyone, what sometimes got lost was the fact that he was an incredibly talented broadcaster. He was so liked and respected in the community – people loved the guy.”

Rychnovsky worked in markets in Missouri, Wisconsin, Florida and Nebraska before coming to Ohio about 15 years ago. His

“Hey Joe, Try This!” segments on WTOL-Channel 11 debuted in 2001, and were an instant hit with viewers.

“That was the essence of Joe – poke a little fun at himself while highlighting the talents of someone locally,” Cole said. “This is an ego business, and Joe did everything without a trace of ego.”

Funeral arrangements are pending.

VIDEO: Joe Rychnovsky on BCSN, January 2017

Contact Blade outdoors editor Matt Markey at mmarkey@theblade.com or 419-724-6068.




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