A tribute to DJ Cohen, who fought pancreatic cancer with a smile
In the 23 years that I have worked for New Jersey 101.5 I have never had a cancer patient as a guest on my show. Oh sure, we’ve broadcast plenty of tributes and charity events for cancer and some spaghetti dinners and potlucks organized by loved ones to benefit someone who is sick or whose family had lost them to cancer. But with the kind of show that the Dennis and Judi Show is, we felt like it could be a little depressing or too heavy to have someone on to talk about his or her illness.
That was until DJ David J. Cohen was a cancer warrior like no other. He was upbeat, inspirational and hysterically funny. He wore costumes to all of his chemo treatments to cheer up his fellow chemotherapy patients. He was a loving husband and father and lived his life in the four years that he had pancreatic cancer the way we all wish we could if we were given a death sentence.
You could not be unhappy when you were around DJ. He became something of a celebrity in the New York-New Jersey area, appearing on numerous TV and radio broadcasts just because nobody had ever seen the likes of him before. He gained hundreds of fans through his inspirational messages, poetry, and music. He was a rock star, an angel and a guru. He was everything to people who knew him.
He was a constant presence on social media, documenting his good days and his bad days his triumphs and his pain his love and devotion for his beautiful wife, Alexis, and his daughters Linda Lori and Caroline and just his general grooviness. He brought a vibe of positive energy and spirituality into every room he walked into and left it hanging in the air in his wake.
Against all odds and despite what his doctors originally told him, DJ outlived all the statistics. Sadly, we lost him on Feb. 27, 2019 and those of us who knew and loved him will miss him greatly. His appearances on our show are so memorable. Inspired as we all were by DJ, the band RJ2 wrote a song about him called “Stronger” along with an accompanying video. About the song, they wrote:
“This is a song and story about faith, positivity, courage and strength. DJ Cohen was a man that chose life. Whether that meant smiling more, making others smile, giving more to your family, believing in yourself, being positive in your outlook, getting closer to God, connecting with friends and strangers, DJ did it all and showed each of us the path to a meaningful and fulfilling life.”
Please give it a watch and a listen.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.
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