R.I.P. The Menards Guy
If I told you Ray Szmanda died, you'd probably say "who?" But if I told you he was"The Menards Guy", you'd probably know exactly who that is.
Ray Szmanda died Sunday at age 91 from a variety of ailments. The Milwaukee native was a lifelong broadcaster, even owning a broadcasting school. He even appeared in a low-budget science-fiction movie in 1978, "The Alpha Incident" about a micro-organism that terrorizes a train station.
But what made Szmanda famous was his twenty-plus year gig (1976-1999) as "The Menards Guy", the always cheerful, high energy spokesman for the Wisconsin based home improvement chain. Menards has grown into a billion dollar business across the Midwest.
Menards issued a statement saying "Ray’s friendly, enthusiastic and fun-loving personality have made a lasting impression on our customers and all of us at Menards," the company said in a statement Monday.