Wednesday, we talked about charity and the selfless things NJ people do to raise money for the sick and less fortunate. The phones lit up. From head shaving, to bike riding to ocean clean-ups, there is no end to what New Jerseyans will do to help others. Say what you want about New Jersey and its residents, when it comes to charity, we’ve got our hearts and pockets open.

That’s why I thought it was perfect timing to talk to you about a friend and former coworker who died tragically from cystic fibrosis at the age of 28, which is longer than most CF patients can hope to live and longer than his doctors ever expected. His name was Erik Van Ness. Anyone who knew him believes that it was Erik’s zest for life, his amazing sense of humor and his positive vibes that gave him those extra years. Erik died in 2002 and was beloved by all of us here at NJ101.5...he was our imaging director- the guy who makes station promos and ID's--and was the creative force behind NJ 101.5 in the late 90s and early 2000's.

He was talented and creative way beyond his years. His work still airs on NJ101.5 and he is sorely missed here. To honor his memory, we give a scholarship in his name to deserving broadcasting students and named a studio in his memory. We are approaching the 16th anniversary of his death this November, and a close friend and former co-worker will be running in the NYC marathon in Erik’s name to raise money for cystic fibrosis research through the Boomer Esiason foundation. Since we loved Erik, it’s a way to cherish his memory and to help find a cure for this wretched disease that steals breath and life from youngsters every day.

Here’s the link and a little about Erik. Hope you can help!

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