For 50 years, Loudoun County had its own AM radio station, WAGE 1200. And for many of those years, one of its best loved personalities was Paul Draisey. He debuted as a 10-year-old reading the weather, his brother told the Loudoun Times-Mirror, and he eventually did every job from reporter to general manager.
Draisey, called by some “The Voice of Loudoun County,” died Monday at age 55. Authorities said he died by gunshot wound, but that foul play is not suspected and the case is under investigation.
Draisey lived in Middleburg and was known most recently for hosting the afternoon show “The Drive Home with Paul Draisey,” and he also called high school sports on radio and TV. His friend and fellow WAGE employee Dave Scarangella told the Times-Mirror that Draisey “cared about Loudoun County and freely devoted his time to a lot of causes, from the USO to the Middleburg Fire Department. He emceed well over a hundred charity events in his lifetime, freely mentored any person who needed help, and seemed to remember every athlete, coach, politician and businessman he ever met.” Draisey and Scarangella were fired from WAGE in 2007 in a format shift, and the station closed in 2009.
Robert Garcia, an executive news producer at NPR, called Draisey ”the unofficial Mayor of Loudoun County” and wrote a great tribute to his mentor here. Draisey’s birthday would have been Wednesday, and his Facebook page is filled with alternately poignant sentiments, some unknowingly wishing him a Happy Birthday, and some lamenting his passing.