The Bravest Man I Ever Met

by POPSIE 1956

I saw a former co worker last night, and I still can’t believe we ran into each other.

I met Steve Murray in 2003,  I was working in the Barre-Montpelier, Vermont area for Vox Radio Group and got transferred to Pittsfield, Massachusetts to become Operations Manager for the cluster of stations in Pittsfield, North Adams, and Great Barrington.

Steve, at the time, was Co Host with Joanne Billow on LIVE 105, doing the Morning Show; Steve was also the Production Director.

Though somewhat young, Steve had/has a boatload of talent, and was from the Capital Region area originally, so I knew he was not a “long timer” in Pittsfield.

Things are going well, then one day my General Manager came to me and said due to budgetary reasons, we had to let go one of the full time air staff.  She told me to choose Steve, or another on air talent, this one a home town boy, who’s only paid radio job was at LIVE 105, for about 20 years.

In truth, I didn’t want to fire either of them, but in the end, it would have made sense for Eric to stay.

The decision made, I call Steve into my office and give him the news.

It was completely out of left field, to this day, even though we talked about it, I STILL feel like a heel,

And yes I got truly shitfaced drunk that night.

In time, as I knew would happen, Steve landed back on his feet in the Albany area, for MY former employer, Albany Broadcasting.

Steve has become a greatly respected pro in my business; he continues to oversee Production, and developed quite a reputation as a Stand Up Comic. I saw this potential in Pittsfield, like I said, a very talented guy.

Steve is very well known in the area for his stand up routine,  As a matter of fact, he, along with a group of comics, were to to put on a show the night I ran into him (I was there to hang out with some old friends in the bar).

Here’s what you don’t know, which makes my seeing Steve last night even more amazing..

Steve’s father passed away just two days before that.

Let that sink in, one of the most if not the most important person in an individuals life DIES, and two days later, you’re on stage making people laugh.

And by all accounts, he was AMAZING! He had the crowd rolling in the aisles.

That night, Steve told me his mom encouraged him to get back to work and also get on with the show.

Steve Murray earned my highest respect.

As a friend and former co worker, I tip my hat to him.

As a father (and grandfather) myself, there’s just no words.

Saying I’m proud doesn’t even begin to express what his action meant to me.

So, I’ll do it the Theater way..

Bravo, my friend, bravo.

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