Steve ‘Mr. Beach’ Leonard dies at 62
RICHMOND, Va. — Richmond broadcasting Hall of Fame inductee and longtime Richmond disc jockey Ronald S. Waters, known on Richmond radio as Steve “Mr. Beach” Leonard, passed away over the weekend.
His body was found in his South Richmond home Saturday night. Co-workers at WFLO in Farmville got concerned when Leonard did not show up for his Saturday night shift.
“He had some health issues that last few years,” Leonard’s younger brother Gregg Waters said, without going into specifics. “He comes from a long line of bad hearts.”
While Waters speculated his older brother suffered a heart attack, the body was taken to the Medical Examiner’s Office in Richmond for autopsy. The investigation is needed since Leonard was alone when he died, his brother said.
“He was a very kind and giving person,” Waters said about his brother. “He had a big heart. He cared a lot about people and the community.”
A Huguenot High School graduate, Leonard attended radio college in Atlanta before he landed his first radio job in 1974.
“He grew up listening to Harvey Hudson and Frank Soden and decided radio is what he wanted to do with his life,” his brother said.
From his first job in North Carolina, Leonard hosted radio shows in Tappahannock, WHAP in Hopewell and before working at several stations in Richmond.
It was in Richmond that Leonard’s moniker and beach music show took off, his brother said.
“I met Steve Leonard in 1974 he was calling himself Wolfman Jack Jr., he was all consumed with being a great DJ, in the mid 80’s we put together the Homegrown Morning Show on B103. Garet Chester Steve and I,” Richmond radio icon Bill Bevins said. “Steve Leonard is 180 pounds of heart and soul with no hair! He always said ‘love you like a brother Billy,’ and he did and I will miss my brother more than words can say.”
Leonard is survived by two brothers and a sister.
There will be visitation Wednesday, June 15, from 6 p.m.- 8 p.m. at Bliley’s, 3801 Augusta Avenue, Richmond, VA 23230.
The graveside service will be Thursday, June 16, at 10 a.m. at Westhampton Cemetery, 10000 Patterson Ave, Richmond, VA 23238.