Remembering KPQ Personality Don West
KPQ sports talk show host Don West passed away at home in Cashmere Friday morning. He was 59-year-old.
West had been battling brain lymphoma since being diagnosed with the illness in June 2021.
Over the years, Don worked with the Shop at Home Network, TNA Wrestling and the Wenatchee Wild Hockey Team before signing on the Don West Show on KPQ in 2016.
Laura Gooch, KPQ's Townsquare Media Market President said Don West was larger than life itself. "He brought so much energy and laughter to our building and we were very lucky to have him as a part of our broadcasting family. He was a walking sports encyclopedia, a music aficionado, and a television and movie buff; and he loved sharing his afternoons with KPQ's listeners on The Don West Show. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Don's beautiful wife, Terri, and his entire family".
During his time with the Wild, Don became close friends with general manager Bliss Littler.
"This has been a tough couple of years, just watching him go through this." said Littler. "It's been tough, and we definitely lost a real good one. What I’d say right now is ‘Heaven’s getting a first ballot hall of famer.”
Littler says he and the Wild coaching staff got to spend an hour with Don about three weeks ago.
He also said he and the staff recently shoveled snow off a deck at Don's home where he would often sit and watch the river flow by.
After joining KPQ, Don's weekday show grew in popularity and was eventually expanded in hours from 2pm-5pm.He often got involved in special interest causes, and was active raising money and supporting veterans.
After initially being treated for cancer, Don announced in September of 2021 that the cancer was in remission following 8 weeks of chemotherapy and 13 radiation treatments. West was looking forward to getting back to his show on KPQ, and had started returning to his office at the station on a regular basis.
But by December, Don was hospitalized as he had to fight cancer a second time.
He posted on Twitter in January of this year that his cancer returned and he was undergoing chemotherapy. He noted then that his recovery was on track with a clean bill of health after 3 months.
He then began his second round of chemotherapy with more aggressive and arduous treatments when symptoms returned yet again.
In May, Don said there had been plans to undergo a stem cell treatment, but the tumor was then twice the size it had been.
Doctors canceled the stem cell treatment, and arranged for him to undergo experimental treatment.
Don was receiving hospice care at home at the of his death Friday morning. A GoFundMe page created by his brother-in-law is still online.
Funeral arrangements have not been announced.