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‘Wheel of Fortune’ voice O’Donnell, 78, dies in LA

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Charlie O’Donnell, the announcer whose voice has opened “Wheel of Fortune” for decades, has died. He was 78.

Agent Fred Wostbrock said Monday that O’Donnell — the voice of the game show even before hosts Pat Sajak and Vanna White appeared — died late Sunday at his Los Angeles home. The cause was unclear.

O’Donnell was a popular radio DJ in New York before starting his television career in Philadelphia with Dick Clark on “American Bandstand.”

He also served as announcer for Oscar and Emmy telecasts and other game shows including “The Newlywed Game.”

His signature phrase “Wheeeeeeel of Fortune,” could be heard on the show from its beginning with host Chuck Woolery in 1975. He worked on the show until 1980, and again from 1988 until his death.

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