PHOENIX - Popular Valley radio personality Bill Austin has died, family friends confirm to ABC15.
The former KEZ host had signed off the air from 99.9 FM in February. He was co-host of the well-known ‘Beth & Bill' in the morning show.
The 55-year-old died from cancer, family friends say.
"His partner, Beth McDonald, was with Austin at the time of his death," said Clear Channel Director of Programming Smokey Rivers.
Clear Channel owns KEZ-Radio.
"Bill was not just my radio partner," McDonald said in a statement. "He was the brother I never had. A couple of days before he passed, while at the hospital, he told me, 'I sure miss doing that little radio show.' This morning, in true Bill fashion, he signed off at exactly 10 o'clock."
A tribute to Bill Austin, featuring the most memorable moments from his two-plus decades with Beth, will air Friday, June 4, 6-10 AM on 99.9 KEZ.
Austin had been a fixture of Phoenix radio for almost 20 years, and had been a TV weather man on Channel 12 before that.
Back in February, Austin choked up delivering his goodbye while talking about his last shift with radio partner Beth McDonald.
"It's a joyous occasion . . . but it's still very difficult," he said.
The ‘Beth & Bill’ show made top ratings during a two-decade run.
It has continued with Beth McDonald as the solo host.
McDonald said, "Working with Bill hasn't been a job, it's been a joy. . . . The chemistry has been there since day one."
How do you remember Bill Austin? Click "add a comment" below to share your stories right now.
KEZ has also set up a tribute page for Bill. View it here .
Watch Bill Austin sign off 99.9 FM:
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