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Controversial radio host Don Imus dies at 79

Longtime radio shock jock Don Imus died Friday at age 79.

The host dubbed “The I-Man” had reportedly been hospitalized since Dec. 24 at Baylor Scott and White Medical Center in College Station, Texas.

A cause of death was not provided by his family. Imus has battled various illnesses over the years, and in 2009 he said he had prostate cancer.

“Imus in the Morning” was on the radio for nearly 50 years, reaching its peak on New York’s WNBC and WFAN. Imus was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1989.
 
During his career he often stirred controversy for his on-air social and political commentary.
 
In 2007, he drew widespread backlash for referring to the Rutgers University’s women’s basketball players as “nappy-headed hos.” He later apologized to the African American players.
 
But many advertisers withdrew from his show, and several politicians publicly criticized Imus for his comments.
 
“He didn’t just cross the line,” then-Sen. Barack Obama said at the time. “He fed into some of the worst stereotypes that my two young daughters are having to deal with today in America.”
 
Imus’s remark prompted MSNBC to drop its simulcast of his show, leading to the creation of “Morning Joe” with co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski. Imus was also fired from CBS radio for the comment.
 
After eight months off the air, he returned to the air on New York’s WABC-AM.
 
Imus retired from broadcasting last year.
 

Tags Barack Obama Joe Scarborough Mika Brzezinski

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