TV and radio performer Bill Nimmo, who was Johnny Carson’s announcer prior to Ed McMahon and a key media figure in Cincinnati, died Feb. 21. He was 93.
Nimmo quit his job as Carson’s sidekick on the ABC daytime gamer “Who Do You Trust?” in the late 1950s in order to host his own, “For Love or Money.” He suggested to Carson that he hire Ed McMahon as his replacement, and McMahon went with Carson when the latter landed “The Tonight Show” in 1962.
Cincinnati native William Lorne Nimmo Jr. served in the Army during WWII, receiving a Purple Heart, Silver Star and Bronze Star.
After the war he started as an overnight DJ on Cincinnati station WLW. Performing multiple roles at WLW-TV, the city’s first television station, he eventually headed to New York, working at NBC, CBS, ABC and the Dumont Network during the 1950s and early ’60s, working with Carson, Jackie Gleason, Jack Lemmon and Garry Moore.
He did a series of well-known live commercials during the “Pabst Blue Ribbon Wednesday Night Fights” in the 1950s. Nimmo spent a year in Los Angeles from 1964-65 doing “The Regis Philbin Show” and other shows.
He was still recording a radio show for the Cincinnati market as late as late summer.
Nimmo is survived by a son and a daughter and six grandchildren.
Donations may be made to the University of Cincinnati, 2600 Clifton Avenue, Cincinnati, OH 45221.