Seattle-based conservative radio host Dori Monson died Saturday night at a local hospital.
As the host of “The Dori Monson Show” on KIRO-FM, Monson actively covered government and social issues, becoming one of the station’s top-rated midday hosts at the time of his death, according to a Sunday news release from the station.
The news release hailed him as a “longtime watchdog of government and social issues” and a “man of deep faith.”
In his show, weekdays from noon to 3 p.m., Monson often invited state politicians from both parties as guests and provided daily round-ups of news headlines called “the fastest 15,” The Seattle Times reported.
According to the Times, whenever he would have guests over on his show, Monson would thank them for being willing to answer his often-skeptical questions on-air.
Bonneville International, KIRO’s parent company, said Monson was hospitalized on Thursday after suffering a “cardiac event” at home.
He died two days later at age 61, leaving behind a wife and three adult daughters.
Monson began his career in broadcast radio in 1982 while he was a student at the University of Washington.
Since the 1990s, he had worked for KING-TV, KING radio and KIRO. According to the Times, one could hear Monson’s show from boomboxes and parked vehicles at housing construction sites every afternoon.
“We, along with Dori’s family, are mourning his loss,” Cathy Cangiano, Bonneville Seattle senior vice president and market manager, said in a statement.
“We are working on on-air tributes to memorialize and celebrate his life and legacy,” Cangiano said.
Many paid tribute to Monson on social media.
I am deeply saddened to hear of Dori Monson’s passing. Sending my prayers to his family, friends, and all his colleagues at KIRO Newsradio. My favorite part of his show was hearing his snicker/laugh when he was genuinely tickled. I will miss you Dori. Godspeed, my friend.
— Kim Wyman (@KimWyman12) January 2, 2023
I’m in complete shock at the passing of Dori Monson. There’s nothing I can say in a tweet — or a book — to adequately describe his impact on our city, our radio stations, and our lives. In addition to inspiring me, he was my friend. I’m going to miss him. https://t.co/5eUo03Ww2O pic.twitter.com/8Zf5V7DWe3
— Jason Rantz on KTTH Radio (@jasonrantz) January 2, 2023
Dori gave us our very first opportunity to be on the radio. He gave us a platform on his show every week for a year. He sat and watched my daughter play hoops with me & most importantly he believed in me. He was my friend & I’m forever grateful for him.
Rest easy Dori Monson. pic.twitter.com/wsKZlyhCrB
— Holla (@terryhollimon) January 2, 2023
Dori Monson was a champion for those who expect better of our state and our nation. Those who believe the government should be accountable to the people. Those who trusted a boy from the mean streets of Ballard to tell the truth. https://t.co/TQOlY4n6xD
— Brandi Kruse (@BrandiKruse) January 2, 2023
I don’t have words tonight but I do have endless prayers for @dorimonson wife Suzanne & his amazing girls & family. He loved them with that gigantic heart of his
And for his remarkable audience that followed him for three decades he loved you too. 1st Thess. 4:14. Love you Dori pic.twitter.com/X09TznHqPt
— Brock Huard (@BrockHuard) January 2, 2023
Monson was a fervent believer in the importance of women’s sports, the Times reported.
In 2016, he coached the Shorecrest High School girls’ basketball team to their first state title.
In 2020, Monson was suspended from his show for two-and-a-half weeks over a social media post during the Washington gubernatorial debate between Democratic incumbent Jay Inslee and Loren Culp, his Republican opponent, the Times reported.
“Inslee: we follow science in WA. The state where I could go to Olympia tomorrow and change my birth cert to say I was a girl on 10/2/61. HAHAHAHAHA,” he tweeted.
Monson apologized for his remark — which the Times described as “mocking transgender people” — after coming back on the air.
“I was on Twitter and wrote a comment about what I saw as a disconnect between what Jay Inslee calls ‘science,’ and the way Washington state allows a person to change the sex on their birth certificate decades after they were born,” he said, according to a KIRO news release.
“My tweet didn’t hit the mark,” Monson said. “Instead, it was painful for some of our listeners and many in the Twitter-sphere. For that, like I said on the air the day after the tweet, I apologize.”
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