Several members of the local broadcasting community have expressed
their feelings about the untimely death of Andy Figge in the letters
which are posted below, as received by the CGC Communicator newsletter
during the week of February 15, 1999.  Indeed, we have lost a very
good man.


Thank you for the word about Andy.  We are all shocked and distressed
over the untimely loss of such a good person.  Andy was a credit to his
profession, and we will all miss him.

Jack Siegal, Chagal Communications/KFOX/KREA


I was deeply saddened by the news of Andy's death.  A professional
whose word and quality of work could be counted on.  We had a standing
order with Andy to do all of our major tower work, because he was the best!

A quick story which shows the character of the man.  A fellow broadcaster
who is struggling to pay the bills, and literally has to count pennies
to keep the station on the air, called Andy for some badly needed tower
work.  The station owner reported that Andy went out to the tower, spent most
of the day there, and fixed the numerous problems, and "only charged me
a few hundred dollars."  I just smiled.  Andy had charged 10% of what
he normally bills his other clients for the same work, and kept it a secret
from the client.

Richard Jenkins, President, Educational Media Foundation,
K-LOVE and Air-1 Networks


First and foremost, my deepest regrets go to Andy Figge's survivors.  Their
loss is unthinkable.  My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.

I was shocked and felt an immediate lump in my throat when I learned (last
night) of Andy's death.  I had worked with Andy when I was the chief engineer
of KNAC-FM in Long Beach, Ca., (now KBUE-FM).  Signal Hill, Andy's home base,
borders Long Beach.

When I lost a good friend, and until that point my ONLY tower man, Joe
Kavanagh, I put the word out that I was looking for someone to fill Joe's
formidable shoes.  (For those who didn't know Joe, he too was, "cautious and
meticulous.")  Almost unanimously, Andy's name headed the list of guys in the
Los Angeles area.

I think most engineers would agree that finding a good tower professional is
akin to getting a good MD.  Once you find one you like, you don't even
consider using anyone else.  Would you trust your "baby" with a stranger?
Unthinkable.  After his first job for me, Andy became my "Tower Doctor."  He
put me at ease right away.

Over about a four-year span, Andy did, perhaps, six separate jobs for me at
the KNAC site, some large, some small.  Regardless of the project, Andy's
professionalism and his attention to even the smallest of details was very
reassuring.  His work was never anything short of perfect--he wouldn't allow
it.  If Andy bid a job out at four hours and he took eight--to do it just
right--he would only accept payment for four.  He looked at the additional
hours as being on him--he wouldn't have it any other way.

Another very important trait of Andy's was his conscientious practice of tower
safety.  He was always mindful of potential hazards and did his work, "By The
Book."  Whether he had a full crew or just himself, safety was always number

I could elaborate, but, suffice it to say, Andy was a Tower Man's Tower Man.

Personally, I didn't know Andy well.  However, I found it a pleasure to be in
his company.  He possessed a keen wit and treated everyone around him with

Our small world has lost a big friend.  His presence will be sorely missed.

Ron Russ, KSSE-FM, Los Angeles


I am shocked and stunned to read (about Andy's untimely death).  In the
past I have found Andy to be a great source of one stop shopping for tower
and antenna work.  We have lost a great asset to the broadcast community.

Marvin Collins, KFI, KOST, KACE, KRTO


So many abilities in one package.  A real bargain.  And so nice to work
with, besides.

Lyle Henry, KFOX/FM


This is such a sad time to lose someone such as Andy. I think that he was an
incredible man that I only met once.  I lost my grandmother only a month ago
and death is such a final and sad thing for a man like Andy. He was such a
nice man and he seemed to be so caring and he talked about the love he had for
his family with me and I will always treasure that because family is so

Clayton Creekmore


I attended Andy Figge's funeral service this afternoon.  It was a wonderful
event that really tied together everyone that Andy touched.  Family, Church,
scouting, music, Coast Guard, civil engineering, and tower services.

The fond and occasionally tear-filled remembrances were insightful and
touching.  The music was exquisitely selected and performed.  Taps was
performed by two buglers from the California Regiment, Civil War Re-creation
Band in which Andy had played French Horn.  Their scheduled performance for
tonight would be dedicated to Andy's memory.

Our community was represented by several engineers.  Joel Saxberg, who was
unable to attend because of the AMR pilot situation, sent a message that was
read, in part, by Tom Koza from KPWR.

Hiring Andy made me look like a better broadcast engineering manager.
Working with Andy made me a better broadcast engineer.

John Paoli, KYSR, Los Angeles, February 16, 1999



I first met Andy on a tower de-tuning project at KVEN, at that time he was 
dating Sue. Andy & Sue wed shortly after and settled down in Long Beach. He
set up a company in Signal Hill & called his firm Tower Technology. I had
heard of his tower work when I was called by KFRN in Long Beach. Andy had 
managed to correct the tilt on a self supporting tower that was built on a
sinking landfill parcel.

I soon learned that Andy was a Lieutenant Commander in the Coast Guard
Reserve & I at the time was a Lieutenant Commander in the Naval Reserve. 
This became a strong tie between us. I would kid Andy about the Coast Guard 
& he would razz me about the Navy. I also learned that Andy wanted a military
career but our heavenly father had other plans for him.

Early on, Andy was charging such low rates I reminded him that we were not 
in the Aluminum Siding business. I guess this phrase stuck & over the years 
he would periodically remind me that "we were not in the Aluminum Siding 

Andy was a hard worker and he would put in very long days. He drove to & from 
most jobs. It was common for Andy to drive over a hundred miles to be at home 
in the evening with his family. During those long commutes home Andy would 
often call me on his cell phone to chat about the job, ask a question or two 
about R.F., or chat about invoices that were not being paid. Despite the 
hardships of long days, long drives & slow payments, Andy never gave up. He 
worked on so many radio facilities in Southern California he claimed he knew 
every Seafood Restaurant between Long Beach & San Francisco, Andy loved his 

Andy had certain qualities that I truly admired. He was a man who went to 
church & sang in the church choir. He was a family man who wanted his 
children to appreciate things and to have values. He gave freely of his time 
supporting the Boy Scouts. Andy had a positive attitude. He would create ways
to make a project move forward when it was at an impasse. He was a problem 
solver & he was always thinking of better ways to do something. He worked 
hard and although he was not a man of wealth, he was rich as a King in moral 
values, character & faith. He was an example for us to follow.

With his passing we have not only lost a fellow worker, a professional 
engineer and military officer, we have lost one very fine gentleman. A 
gentleman who practiced what he preached and left this a better place.

Until we meet again in that house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens 
Semper Paratus Andy - Semper Paratus.

I am proud to have known ye,

Joel Saxberg