Cancer Claims the Life of Former Popular Binghamton Broadcaster
In a heartbreaking Facebook post published by his wife America, the world learned that former 98.1 The Hawk Program Director and Afternoon Drive personality Don Brake lost his battle with cancer on Tuesday, October 25, 2022.
For 13 months, Brake fought an aggressive form of lymphoma. In her social media post, Brake's wife wrote,
He fought till the end but it was time to free himself from the physical pain he endured for 13 months. We came home from the hospital yesterday afternoon. The ride home was long but once again he was able to feel the wind on his face and feel the warmth of the sun on his skin. He was home with his girls just like he wanted. He gave it all but it was time to rest.”
A native of Morgantown, West Virginia, Brake was a 30-year radio veteran who was on the air and programmed radio stations in Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia, Maryland, Georgia, and right here in Binghamton where he served as Program Director of 98.1 The Hawk from September of 2006 to June of 2011. Brake was also the afternoon drive personality on 98.1 The Hawk from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
It was Brake who coined the term, "Hawktober" in 2008. Hawktober was popular with Hawk listeners because it was a month of special contests, concerts, and radio imaging. 98.1 The Hawk carried on the tradition of referring to October as "Hawktober" for nearly a decade following Brake's introduction.
Brake had just accepted a promotion within the company he was most recently working for and was in the process of moving his wife, daughter, and mother from Texas to Georgia when he received his cancer diagnosis.
Brake documented his cancer journey on his Facebook page and a GoFundMe was established to help with medical bills. Brake's GoFundMe remains active. Brake leaves behind a wife, America, and a young daughter named Naomi. Brake was 52 years old.