In this week’s issue… More turmoil on Boston sports radio – Audacy changes looming? – Remembering John La Barca – Toronto hosts exit – Radio Days arrive
By SCOTT FYBUSH
*There’s never any shortage of drama on Boston sports radio, but at least there’s now an explanation of what’s been going on with the city’s top-rated morning show, “Toucher and Rich’s on Beasley’s WBZ-FM.(98.5 the Sports Hub).
Co-host Fred Toucher was off the air for much of this year battling throat issues, then returned briefly in May before again disappearing from the show amidst a flurry of cryptic tweets that at one point suggested he was in danger of self-harm.
After several days without either co-host – it was a scheduled vacation for Rich Shertenlieb – Toucher returned to the air Friday to fill listeners in on what has been going on: beset by depression after his throat issues and in the midst of a divorce, Toucher said he was in a dark place in the days leading up to the Memorial Day weekend.
“Half the time I live alone, without my kids, all right,” he told listeners. “So then there was the whole throat thing with the possible cancer, and I was out of work for five weeks, and there was a lot of time alone.”
Toucher asked his father to come to town to stay with him, but before he could arrive, Toucher made the social media posts, began drinking out of embarrassment, then voluntarily checked himself into a detox facility where he rehabbed during the holiday weekend and for a few days afterward.
Describing it as the most challenging days of his life, Toucher told listeners he’s working with his therapist and plans to give up drinking for good.
After a few turbulent months, will Toucher’s openness ease some of the tensions that have plagued the show? No doubt Beasley hopes so, especially as its crosstown rival, Audacy’s WEEI, continues to have its own struggles.
(Read on for more on Audacy’s woes in our subscriber-only section below…)
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