Frank P. Befera

Frank Befera, a true broadcasting pioneer, has led a distinguished career capped by founding and building two television stations in northern Minnesota.
Mr. Befera was born in Hibbing, MN, and first demonstrated his interest in broadcasting by building his first crystal radio set in 1931. By age 17 he had constructed a ham radio transmitter. His burgeoning interest in radio, however, was interrupted by World War II . Mr. Befera was an officer in the famed "Merrill's Marauders" in the Far East Theater, where he walked 3,000 miles across China from Kinming to Canton. He was decorated with the Purple Heart and the Silver Star.
Returning to Hibbing in 1946, Frank returned to radio as an engineer at WFMG-AM. Two years later he owned the station, and purchased WHLB-AM in Virginia, MN as well. In 1965 he expanded his holdings into cable TV, starting Range TV Cable, which he still owns and operates.
In 1965, Mr. Befera moved to Duluth and started WDIO-TV, the ABC affiliate. Determined to serve the Iron Range as well, Frank also constructed WIRT-TV in his hometown of Hibbing. He remained President and General Manager of these two stations until 1987.
After leaving WDIO-TV, Frank concentrated his efforts on operating the Range TV Cable system. Not being one to rest on his accomplishments, he started another radio station, WUSZ-FM, in Virginia, MN in 1987, which he moved to Duluth in 1994.
During this mercurial career, Frank also found time to act as President of the Hibbing Curling Club and played a leadership role to build the Duluth Curling Club. He was also instrumental in developing the Duluth International Airport and served as the Airport President
Frank has left an indelible mark on the broadcasting landscape in northern Minnesota, and continues his legacy to this day as owner of Range TV Cable. All Minnesota broadcasters can draw inspiration from the storied career of Frank P. Blefera.