Roman V. Marynowych, a longtime D.C. resident who hosted and produced weekly radio and television programs, “The Ukrainian Melody Hour,” died Nov. 10 of natural causes in a hotel in Bridgewater, N.J. He was 86.
Born in Lubachiv, Ukraine, in 1919, Mr. Marynowych spent his early working years as a sportswriter and later worked in Western Europe as a broadcaster and with the Boy Scouts, both as a scoutmaster and regional administrator. After immigrating to the United States in 1950, he continued to work for the Boy Scouts and later worked as a librarian until his retirement from the Union Public Library in Union, N.J., in 1991.
Mr. Marynowych moved to the District in 1964, where he lived for 41 years. He commuted between the District and New York, and founded the radio version of the melody hour in 1952 on WEVD-AM in New York. He started its television counterpart on WATV-TV three years later, and the program was seen in many other cities, including Chicago, New York and Philadelphia.
The weekly telecasts provided performance opportunities for dancers and musicians and broadened recognition of the Ukrainian visual and performing arts within the United States. They also served as a source of coverage of the news from Ukraine from the early years of its independence through the emergence of its current democracy.
Mr. Marynowych was a leading fundraiser for the construction of a Ukrainian Catholic chapel in Lourdes, France, where he is to be buried.
In 2000, he was listed as an honored professional in the National Register’s Who’s Who in Executives and Professionals. Earlier this year, he was inducted by the American Biographical Institute into its register of notable biographies in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the program’s first broadcast.
Mr. Marynowych is survived by his wife, Odile; and three children — Roman, Paul and Alexandra, all of the District.