CLEVELAND - After being with WDOK for 17 and 18 years, Trapper Jack and Jim McIntyre announced they're leaving after their contracts weren't renewed.
On his final morning show at WDOK Wednesday, Trapper Jack made an announcement that sent his Facebook page in an uproar.
"A programming note. I am leaving WDOK after 17 years. I am saying goodbye as of now. It's been amazing, these 17 years. Also, info man Jim McIntyre is leaving WDOK after 18 years. It is not our choice to leave, but it is necessary and it's ultimately a good thing."
[You can listen to Trapper's farewell here: http://5.wews.com/gedaw]
The Trapper and Toohey show went from the bottom to the top, being 12th in the ratings and climbing all the way up to the top. Still, higher-ups decided to let them go, something that puzzles Trapper -- though he understands how these gigs work.
"Last month, Jim and I were both told our contracts weren't being renewed. Why? We weren't really told. We all understand that, it's the way it has to be. At the same time, you go through the self examination...and we do play well with others. Maybe it's a money thing? They didn't say that is was. Performance ratings thing? The last few months have been astounding, so it's not that. To be honest, I don't know why they're letting us go," Trapper Jack said during his farewell speech to loyal listeners.
He was happy to have at least been given the chance to say goodbye, and he thanked his GM for "the trust and allowance" to do it.
"It was a powerful sign," Trapper said after being forced to walk away from a job he so clearly loves.
Sue Wilson, current program director at WQMX in Akron, hired Trapper Jack for the WDOK gig years ago and posted this message to her Facebook page.
"I've had the pleasure, honor, privilege to work with Trapper Jack and Jim McIntyre during my tenure at WDOK 102.1. After bringing Trapper in...I sat back...listened and learned from the MASTER. Trap and Jimmy Mac are two of the pros in this ever-changing business. The smile in their voices, wonderful perspective, and class will be greatly missed on our airwaves. But the next chapter is coming. Love you guys."
McIntyre's Facebook page lit up with disbelief as well after hearing the surprising news.
"Stunning announcement in Cleveland radio - Trapper Jack and Jim McIntyre leaving WDOK. Contracts "not renewed". End of an era. Speechless," said fan David Revay.
By 10:30 a.m., WDOK had stripped Trapper Jack's on-air farewell and goodbye note from its website. The url now reads "page not found."
Two things are crystal clear: both masters of the mic will be missed, but they also understand great things are still ahead.
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