Radio Broadcaster Casey Kasem Dead At 82
The host of America’s Top 40 suffered from dementia in his final years, and his healthcare was the focus of a dispute between his second wife Jean Kasem, and the three children from his first wife.
A Los Angeles judge sided with the children on June 9 to permit them to withhold food, hydration and his usual medication and allow them to choose a comfort-oriented, end-of-life care at a Washington state hospital, according to NBC News.
“Early this Father’s Day morning, our dad Casey Kasem passed away surrounded by family and friends,” daughter Kerri Kasem said in a statement posted online, according to Reuters. “Even though we know he is in a better place and no longer suffering, we are heartbroken.”
The broadcaster’s children claimed Jean prevented them from seeing their father, who was suffering from Lewy body dementia that presents similar to Parkinson’s disease.
Casey was born in Detroit in 1932 to Lebanese immigrant parents. At its peak, Casey’s America’s Top 40 was heard on 1,000 stations in almost 50 countries. He signed off every show by saying, “Keep your feet on the ground and keep reaching for the stars.”
In addition to his radio career, Casey also voiced the Scooby-Doo character Shaggy from 1969 to 1997, and again from 2002 to 2009.