Carson Cooper, the friendly, familiar voice that greeted WUSF 89.7 listeners as they started their weekday mornings these past 18 years, has died.
The dear friend and colleague to the entire WUSF Public Media team died Saturday following a long illness. He was 58.
“Carson was the voice of WUSF in the morning for radio listeners across Tampa Bay. He was a warm and engaging host, and an important part of our team. We are so sorry to lose him,” said JoAnn Urofsky, WUSF’s general manager. "We extend our most sincere condolences to Carson’s family. He will be greatly missed by the WUSF Public Media family and by the radio listeners of Tampa Bay.”
Cooper was already well known in radio circles when he joined WUSF in January 2000 as host of Morning Edition. He kept listeners up to date each morning on the latest news from the Tampa Bay area – the adopted home for the Tennessee native.
He also was part of the creation of WUSF’s public affairs show, “Florida Matters,” serving as its first host. There, he sat down and spoke with hundreds of guests, ranging from local authors to newsmakers like Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik.
WUSF will be sharing more in the coming days about how Cooper helped keep this community connected and informed for the past several decades. The WUSF News team will miss him dearly.