By SHELLEY TERRY - firstname.lastname@example.org
PLYMOUTH TOWNSHIP —
Local radio personality Roger McCoy is leaving 98.3 The BULL and heading south to work at a country music station in Asheville, N.C.
The popular disk jockey, who participated in numerous community events and country music concerts throughout his 10 years in Ashtabula County, broke the news Tuesday on his Facebook page.
“As I’m sure you’ve heard, I put in my two week notice yesterday and I will be leaving 98.3 The BULL soon,” he wrote. “It’s hard to believe that I’ve been with this cluster of radio stations for over 10 years.”
The post received 152 “likes” and 25 comments. Everyone congratulated him and many wrote that they would miss hearing him on the radio.
McCoy will be assistant program director, music director and radio host of the afternoon drive for 99.9 Kiss Country in Asheville, starting July 1.
“It’s a better opportunity for my family,” he said, noting he has “a bunch of kids to put through college.” He urges his fans to continue to listen to The BULL because “I poured my heart and soul into that station.”
An Ashtabula native, McCoy moved away after high school to pursue a career in radio, but when his parents became sick and needed their adult children to help, he moved back.
“So I went out to what was Clear Channel of Ashtabula (on Jefferson Road) at the time and asked Dana Schulte and Dennis O’Brien for a job and they were gracious enough to give me one in the news department with Kathy Davis,” he said. “Then through what I still think was desperation they decided to place me on WFUN-AM970 as a news talk show host. But I worked hard and became well known for digging up information on our local government officials.”
Then, eight years ago, Clear Channel launched a country station, 98.3 The BULL, and put McCoy in charge.
“My General Manager, Dana Schulte, always joked that no one else in the building was as redneck as me so I won by default,” McCoy said. “So we kicked off The BULL at the Ashtabula County Fair with Kristy Lee, Dave Hatfield, Jake Andrews and Paul West.”
A few months later, Scony joined the morning show and McCoy said the good times rolled. In fact, when asked about the best times at The BULL, McCoy said, “One word — Scony. I can’t say more than that.”
He also enjoyed meeting Mark ‘Butter’ Fortney of Ashtabula who leads the group, Trailer Choir.
“He’s an amazing talent,” he said. “It’s good to see someone from our area do well.”
But the most important events throughout the past decade have happened at home, not work, McCoy said.
“I married my beautiful bride, Ruby, helped my parents gracefully and peacefully die from heart disease and cancer, and loved every minute I have had to play with my four kids,” he said. “Plus there is my good friend, Pastor Bill McMinn, who inspired me through Christ to live my life better, so much so that I named my new baby boy, Christian.”
But inside, McCoy longed to find a new adventure.
“I didn’t believe it could happen,” he said. “I thought I was rooted too deep in Ashtabula to ever leave again ... Now remember I said I came home to help my parents as they passed away.”
When McCoy’s mother died, her last wishes were that the family donate her body to science to help doctors learn and find a cure for cancer.
“This process takes about three years to complete and Case Western Reserve had just sent my mother’s ashes home for us to bury last week,” he said. “It wasn’t three hours after placing my mom to rest that I received a phone call offering me this new job opportunity.”
McCoy and his family believes they have made the right decision.
“It was almost like He said, ‘Job well done, you took care of your parents until they were at rest, now it’s your turn to shine. Go fly.’”