Community honors longtime San Antonio Radio Host during memorial service

Radio Host for Mix 96.1 NOW died Oct. 21 after a long battle with rare cancer, T-Cell Lymphoma.

San Antonio – Family, friends, and the community gathered at the Tech Port Arena Sunday to honor the longtime local radio broadcaster Russell Rush.

People described Russell as a radio host, storyteller, and great friend. He was known for his vibrant personality and community advocacy.

“I worked in radio for 27 years. I’ve never met anybody who is more passionate about the community and all the right things. He loved San Antonio,” said longtime friend and co-worker, Chase Murphy.

Outside of being a longtime on-air personality and program director for Mix 96.1, his passion did not stop at the microphone. He was a partner for several non-profit groups, including Make-A-Wish, Toys for Tots, and Susan G Komen. Murphy says Russell raised cancer awareness even before he was diagnosed with a rare type, T-Cell Lymphoma.

“Raise for the cure was probably one of his biggest things. It meant a lot to him. He wanted to have the biggest group, and he wanted to raise the most money,” said Murphy.

Russell first announced his diagnosis to listeners in June 2021. He explained his diagnosis had no cure, only treatment and hope for remission. While he fought cancer, he continued storytelling and carrying out one of his favorite projects “The Russell Rush Haunted Tour. It is something his friend Vanessa Garcia says that didn’t go unnoticed.

“Days and nights, weekends, away from family just creating content, piecing it together. They’re the reasons why we have two Emmys,” said Garcia.

As people took out time to say their final goodbye on Sunday, they did so in “Russell Fashion” by singing songs and sharing video dedications to his family.

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About the Authors:

Allysa Cole is a news reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in September 2022. She previously worked in the Rio Grande Valley at KGBT, KRGV and Azteca Valle. She started her career at WHPM FOX23 in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, after graduating from University of Southern Mississippi. Allysa is a Detroit native.

Adam Barraza is a photojournalist at KSAT 12 and an El Paso native. He interned at KVIA, the local ABC affiliate, while still in high school. He then moved to San Antonio and, after earning a degree from San Antonio College and the University of the Incarnate Word, started working in news. He’s also a diehard Dodgers fan and an avid sneakerhead.