Radio Icon Kidd Kraddick Had Such A Huge Influence In My Career Choice
By now most of you know that a radio icon, Kidd Kraddick, was called home last Saturday while in New Orleans for a charity golf tournament. What you may not know is how much of an impact Kidd had on my career choice.
Growing up in a small southern town, I never really gave entering into the field of broadcasting much thought. I always thought that it would be something cool to do, but never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d pursue a career in radio/television broadcasting.
I recall driving to LSU-E one morning and listening to Kidd’s show on the radio. He was notifying parents that morning on the show that their child had been selected to take part in the “Kidd’s Kids” vacation to Disney World. For those of you who don’t know, “Kidd’s Kids” is a charity Kraddick started to help young kids with terminal illnesses. Once a year, he and his staff would take kids, and their families, suffering from a terminal illnesses to Disney World in Orlando. Kidd’s mission was simple, let kids be kids and not worry about their illness for a week.
When I heard this on the radio that morning while driving to school it was as if a fire had been lit. From that morning on, I knew what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I wanted to get on the radio and help those in need.
That same week I changed my major and took on the studies of Broadcast Journalism. Knowing how competitive this field is, I made a promise to myself that if ever I was put into a position like Kidd, and so many others on the radio, I too would use the radio platform to help others in their time of need. Hearing Kidd Kraddick help kids that morning not only changed my college major, it changed the course of my life.
I have been to his studio once in Dallas, but I was never given the chance to meet him. Like so many of you, I too felt like I have known Kidd for years. I wish I could have met Kidd to thank him for not only giving me the motivation to be the best in our field, but to thank him for paving the road for my career. Yes, I listened, I learned, and I am where I am today because of that one morning I heard him tell kids that were dying “You’re going to Disney World.”
I hope that what I learned from this radio icon can be implemented for many more years. Years ago, when I was let go from my first radio gig, the first person I thought of was Kidd Kraddick. You see, he too at one time in his career was let go, and he used that single event in his career to motivate him for many more years. He wanted to prove to someone that they had just made a huge mistake.
Kidd, we never met, we never even worked for the same company, but I want to say thank you for inspiring me to work hard and to never just be satisfied with an average show. I also say thanks for teaching me that radio isn’t just about us. Radio is about what you can do for others when they seem to be down and out. Kidd, I will continue to always look up because I know that where it all is.