EXPIRED: 01/10/10 – Jan Gabriel, 69, died on a Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!
You may not know his name, but you know his oft imitated voice – or at least his tagline. It was Gabriel who first came up with the phrase “Sunday, Sunday, Sunday!” for the US 30 Drag Strip and Sante Fe Speedway TV & radio commercials. These ads were some of the catchiest local commercials ever. Even Al Roker from the Today Show stil imitates Gabriel in his weather forecasts.
Gabriel began his career in Chicago in the the late 50s as a radio personality and host of the “Up Tempo” TV dance program. He also produced & directed “Flash Gordon Theater.” His nationally syndicated TV program “Super Chargers” ran for over a decade. He turned a part-time job as a drag race announcer in the early 60s into a gig as the voice of the Sante Fe Speedway and, later, the Indianapolis 500.
In 1990, Gabriel discovered out he had a genetic Polycystic Kidney Disease. A kidney transplant in 93 kept him going for a dozen years but in 2005, it faield and his health declined. Since then he’s been waiting for another donor, but that match never came.
You can’t say it enough. He died on Sunday, Sunday, Sunday….