I just don’t know where to begin.
My dear friend Francene has passed away at the age of 43.
I can’t breathe. I just. Dunno. She’s the one person I’ve been able to count on for three years. I love her dearly.
May she rest in peace.
I’ll miss you, doll.
EDIT: If you loved Francene, please stop by any BB&T branch to make a donation to support aneurysm research. The Francene Fund.
From Congressman John Yarmuth:
“Francene brought so much passion and joy to every aspect of her life and was genuinely driven by compassion for those around her. She woke up every morning excited to use her position to help make people’s lives better. And that’s exactly what she did– entertaining and informing us, always giving back, personally helping people find jobs, and so much more. The more time I spent with her, the more I respected her intellect and admired her generosity. I am devastated for the loss to this community and heartbroken for the loss of my friend. My thoughts and prayers are with her mother and all of her friends.”
From Attorney General Jack Conway:
“This is such a terrible tragedy. I thought the world of Francene and she was just far too young to leave us. She contributed greatly to the public discourse in Kentucky. Her listeners were her cause and I loved that passion. It was never a nine-to-twelve radio job to her. For example, just a few weeks ago, she and I both attended a play at Fern Creek High School on a Friday night to spotlight the issue of cybersafety. She carried her commitment with her at all times.
Francene never minced words and frankly, she made me a better public servant. I didn’t just answer questions on her show, she always followed-up to make certain we were taking action. When I was on her show talking about the issues, I knew she and her listeners were holding me accountable. I always found her well researched and she will be missed.”
From Metro Councilman Jim King:
“I am shocked and saddened to learn of the untimely passing of Francence Cucinello. Best known as simply “Francene”, she provided radio listeners in the region a provocative, interesting, dialogue on the issues of the day. The thoughts and prayers of our family and staff go out to the family and friends of Francene.”
From Chris Thieneman:
“I am deeply saddened by the loss of my dear and good friend Francene Cucinello. My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends during this time of surprising loss. Francene touched the hearts and minds of so many in this community, and I hope each of each will celebrate her life and dedication to Louisville. She spent her life bettering those around her, and her passion for life will be greatly missed. Many knew her as a radio personality, but I am grateful that I knew her as my friend.”
From Councilwoman Madonna Flood:
“While we may have had differing opinions on political issues, the fact remains that when it came to helping the community, especially taking care of our our soldiers and service women with “Doing our Part from the Heart,” there was no political party or opinion as far as Francene was concerned. She had a caring spirit when it came to helping those in need.”
From Governor Steve Beshear:
“I am deeply saddened to learn that one of Kentucky’s most beloved radio personalities, Francene Cucinello, passed away unexpectedly today. I considered her a friend, despite her tough questions, and I enjoyed our frequent interviews on her show. People felt like they knew Francene because she was so open and honest, and her death is a terrible blow to the community. She was savvy, warm, whip-smart and compassionate. She will be deeply missed by all.”
From U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell:
“I was saddened to hear about the passing of Francene Cucinello. Francene’s open debate on a wide-range of political and social issues kept Louisville talking, and that’s one of the reasons her show was so popular. Elaine and I send our condolences to her family and friends and to the entire WHAS family.”
From Mayor Jerry Abramson:
“While we didn’t always agree on the issues, Francene had a special way of spurring people to talk about subjects important to our community and our state.”
From Secretary of State Trey Grayson:
“Nancy and I are deeply saddened by the sudden death of Francene Cucinello, and our thoughts are prayers are with her family, friends and her co-workers at WHAS. Francene’s passing is a huge loss for the Louisville community and all of Kentucky. Her many talents and her skill at sparking important dialogue about politics and current events in Kentucky will be greatly missed.”
UPDATE @ 10:30 P.M. – Here’s a screenshot from Google Trends:
One of the top searches in the United States. Infectious. Just like she’d like it. A welcomed bright spot on this emotional evening.