Arthur J. (Art) Lamb, 60, a National Park Service official who was a well-known radio and television performer in Washington for 14 years before leaving the airwaves in 1959, died at his Fairfax home Friday after a heart attack.
Mr. Lamb came to Washington in 1946where he became a staff announcer on radio station WEAM.
"Right off, they gave me important things to do," he once explained, "such as lugging asafe upstairs, carrying records and filing cabinets."
Assigned to be host of a show that began at 5:30 a.m., he felt that it was his job to "wake up the farmers and their chickens and do my darndest to stay awake until 9:30 a.m. I never fell asleep once, so they promoted me."
It was this witty disposition, thoughts on events of the day and happenings in his family that earned Mr. Lamb a loyal following.
He hosted "Lamb's Gambols" on WEAM and a night show on WTTG-TV in television's early days in the late 1940s.
During a run of more than seven years on WTTG he functioned as a 'TV disc jockey," as host of a daily show from 1:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. on which he interviewed visiting celebrities, and shared opinions with his viewers on topics of the day such as men's fashions. His later shows included "Ladies Be Seated Theater" and the "Lamb Session."
A TV Guide reader poll in 1954 named Mr. Lamb the most popular local television performer in Washington.
He left station WRC-TV and his show. "In Our Town," in 1959 to join Larrabee Associates, a local advertising firm.
Mr. Lamb later served as president of his own advertising market, and publicity firm before becoming director of special events for the National Park Service's National Capital Region in 1970.
He was active in a number of charitable organizations. He was a founder of both Heros Inc., which aids families of policemen and firemen killed in the line of duty, and the Fairfax County Police Youth Club.
In 1954 he served as business chairman of for the fund drive of the Fairfax Countyynd Falls Church Community Chest. In 1965 he headed the Cancer Crusade in Fairfax County.
He also served as an adviser to the National Polio Foundation in the early 1950s and for a time was president of the Grocery Wheels of Washington.
Mr. Lamb served during the mid 1960s on the City Council of Fairfax City and run unsuccessfully for mayor in 1968 and 1970.
He was a native of Yonkers, N.Y.
Before coming to Washington in 1946, he saw duty in the Coast Guard aboard troop ships in the Pacific.
He faced his first microphone aboard one of those ships when he was asked to read news bulletins over the ship's loudspeaker system.
He told a Post reporter in 1956, "I decided right then, 'This is for me.'"
Mr. Lamb was a member of St. Leo's Catholic Church in Fairfax.
Survivors include his wife, Rita, and a son, Josh, both of the home in Fairfax; another son, Jay Jr., of Arlington; two daughters, Jill King, of Front Royal, Va., and Melody Lamb, of Arlington, and three grandchildren.