Rodney Dale “Rod, Rocky” Thomasson, 59, Porland, Ore., died Saturday, Sept. 2, 2017, at his home.
He was born March 8, 1958, to Oscar and Betty (Legg) Thomasson. He graduated from Campus High School, Haysville. He studied at Dodge City Community College, where he earned an associate degree in Radio/Television and vocational certificate in communication technology, graduating with high honors. He earned his bachelor of arts and master of science degrees at Fort Hays State University, graduating Magna Cum Laude.
He held management positions in the food service industry and was a gourmet cook. He later worked in news at KAYS Radio/Television in Hays, KEDD radio, Dodge City, and KWHK radio, Hutchinson. He was producer/writer and news anchor for KMUW public radio in Wichita, and assignment editor at KWCH-TV in Wichita. He taught media law and oral communication and was a policy fellow/research associate, author/editor with the Docking Institute of Public Affairs at FHSU.
He was a member of Pinnacle national honorary. He was director of broadcasting at Colby Community College, served as a member of the board of directors for High Plains Public Radio, and was an online instructor of communication for EDUKAN of Kansas.
He was well-known and respected in the broadcast news profession as well as teaching and mentoring many successful young broadcasters, leaving his legacy in the field. He was affiliated with News Broadcasters of Kansas, Kansas Association of Broadcasters and Radio Television News Directors Association. He was planning a return move to Hays within the week at the time of his death.
Survivors include two brothers, Oscar Ray Thomasson II, Wichita, and Randy Thomasson, Portland; a sister-in-law and friend, Sally Konkel Thomasson, Portland; a niece, Meredith Clayton and husband, Will, Portland; three nephews, Timothy Thomasson, Portland, Andrew Jackson Thomasson and wife, Yumi, USN, Yokosuka, Kanagawa and Matthew Thomasson, Wichita; a host of friends and colleagues around the country; his cat companion, Sophie; and close friend, Nancy Selbe, Hays.
Cremation has taken place; as per his request there will be no services or memorial.