Radio host Kidd Kraddick, 53, dies at charity event - WSMV News 4

Radio host Kidd Kraddick, 53, dies at charity event

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Kidd Kraddick (Source: Kiddnation.com) Kidd Kraddick (Source: Kiddnation.com)
(KLTV) -

Radio and TV personality Kidd Kraddick, a staple for many East Texans' morning commutes, died on Saturday in New Orleans. He was 53. Kraddick broadcast his nationally syndicated radio show, "Kidd Kraddick in the Morning," from a studio in Las Colinas. The show aired in East Texas on 93.1 and 95.5 FM. 

WWL in New Orleans reported that Kraddick was taken to a New Orleans hospital on Saturday afternoon and was very sick. Kraddick was in New Orleans for a fundraising event for his charity, Kidd's Kids.

In a tragically ironic twist, Kraddick did a radio segment just last week on "what he would say to each member of the show in his final moments on earth" as a comedy bit.

"Have you ever thought about those last moments of your life?" he asked other members of the show. "Nobody wants a long, lingering illness; nobody wants just that; but it would be nice if you could have a day or two where you know it's coming."

The final tweet posted on his official Twitter account was a promotion for his "Kidd's Kids" charity concert at the House of Blues on August 15. The proceeds will be used to send children with chronic or terminal ilnesses to Disney World.

"All of us at KISS-FM, ClearChannel Dallas, YEA Networks and the Kidd Kraddick in the Morning crew are heartbroken over the loss of our dear friend and leader," said KISS-FM in a statement released late Saturday night. "Kidd devoted his life to making people smile every morning, and for 21 years, his foundation has been dedicated to bringing joy to thousands of chronically and terminally ill children."

Kraddick was divorced and has one daughter. He won a number of awards, including the Marconi Award for radio personality of the year in 2006.

Social media exploded as news of Kraddick's death began to spread. It was Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban who initially released the news on Twitter, writing "You were an amazing man and friend. You are already missed."

"Oh Man, I just heard Kidd Kraddick died! He's my childhood dj. What a sad day. His poor family. He was always nice 2 me from the beginning," singer Kelly Clarkson tweeted.

Joe Jonas of the Jonas Brothers, only recently announced as the headline act of a planned first-ever Kidd's Kids charity concert in Dallas next month, wrote: "The sad sad news about Kidd Kraddick is shocking. He will be missed greatly."

Richie Tomblin, described as the head golf professional at the Timberlane Country Club in Gretna on its website, told The Associated Press that Kraddick wasn't looking well when he saw him getting ready for Saturday's charity event.

"He came out and he borrowed my golf clubs and went out to the driving range," Tomblin told the AP when contacted by phone. "It's kind of a freaky situation. He came out. He practiced a little bit. He hit the ball at the first tee and wasn't feeling good and after that I didn't see him."

The "Kidd Kraddick in the Morning" show is heard on more than 75 Top 40 and Hot AC radio stations and is a leader among most-listened-to contemporary morning programs, Biro said. The radio program also is transmitted globally on American Forces Radio Network while the show's cast is also seen weeknights on the nationally syndicated TV show "Dish Nation," he added.

The cause of his death is unknown at this time.. KISS-FM said that information will be released at an appropriate time.

Copyright 2013 KLTV. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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