Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Ladimir Kwiatkowski graduated from high school in 1947. He had a baseball scholarship to attend Bowling Green University. At the time, he didn’t know whether he wanted to go to college or get a car.
He decided on the car. He chose to work and earn the money. But he recognized the importance of a college education. So in 1949 he decided to go to Arizona to Arizona State University (ASU). He wanted to be a sports broadcaster. The baseball weather was good in Arizona. He played with the ASU team and was being eyed by scouts from the Cleveland Indians.
While at ASU, he met and married his wife Patsy Lou. Lad would graduate from ASU with a degree in journalism. He still needed to gain weight to play professional baseball. He decided to try and get a job in television. “If I get a job in television, I’m going to stay. If I can’t get a job in TV, I’m going to take the baseball offer.”
The day after his graduation, he went to Channel 5 to look around. He met with the general manager, Dick Rawls (the future inspiration for Mr. Grudgemeyer) and they hit it off. One hour after returning home, Lad received a call to start work the next day.
While manning a camera for the It’s Wallace? show one day, Bill Thompson grabbed Lad to help him with a bit they were doing. The rest is history.
You can read more about Ladmo on the 50's page.