The Lone Ranger and Tonto

The Lone Ranger and the Hurricane

I remember the day an episode of “The Lone Ranger” was coming on the radio. It wasn’t just any episode; this one would tell how the Lone Ranger became the hero he was, how his faithful Indian companion Tonto joined him, and even how he got the great horse Silver.

Since this was in the 1940s, radio was the daily entertainment medium for children and adults alike. Although radio today is mostly music and talk shows, before television it was rich with drama of all types and for all tastes.

As a youngster I had my favorites, but now I can only remember “The Lone Ranger,” the serialized story of a former Texas Ranger who had donned a mask and dedicated himself to defending truth and justice in the Old West.

Although the particular episode about the beginnings of my hero’s adventures was something special, what makes the memory stick in my mind is its being scheduled for the same night a hurricane hit my home town of Miami, Florida. One of the usual effects of a severe storm is the loss of power in the affected area, and my neighborhood was no exception.

What to do? It was unthinkable that I would have to miss this crucial episode. Here the memory is a bit fuzzy, because I don’t know how I talked my parents into the solution to my problem.

I got to hear “The Lone Ranger” that night, but I did so on the radio of our family car parked out front in the midst of the howling wind and rain.