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I am sharing this story by Llyod Ford about Kidd Kraddick’s kindness to a cancer patient and employee, Mark Pollitt.

Something Unknown About Kidd Kraddick…..Until A Promise Is Kept Today

October 18, 2012 at 9:19am

My best friend (Mark Pollitt) went to work for Kidd Kraddick some time ago and has shared a variety of observations along the way about Kidd that have been warm, smart and interesting.   I have never met him myself or even talked with Kidd Kraddick on the phone, but I did learn a little bit about him from the time Mark worked for Kidd.  I am going to share a little of that with you.  It may not be a perfect story.  I am emotional, but this topic is worth a read.  i promise you.

First — a little background.  My best friend rose up through the programming ranks in local radio stations and eventually worked for Cumulus in their corporate offices as one of their Directors Of Pop Programming with their stations nationwide.  His influence was kind and nurturing in a wide variety of settings and a broad sample of people in the radio industry.  Ask someone about Mark and you will hear glowing comments about how he helped them.  In that role he helped so many programmers and on-air people over the years.   Then Mark had one of those very unusual cross-fire moments in life when everything seemed to go bad all at once.  He lost his job, his marriage came apart and his life very suddenly became more difficult and uncompromising.

It was many unexpected turns all at once.   Murphy’s law or whatever you want to call it.

Mark moved from Atlanta, lived with us for a little while and began a new job search to retool.   During this time, Mark found a lump.  We would soon learn this was evil Melanoma.  Almost immediately, Mark had a procedure and they “got it all!”

Soon after, he snagged a great job with Kidd Kraddick in Dallas, Texas.  None of us had any idea what this new adventure would be, but Mark loved Texas and we were all excited for the new adventure.

When Mark and I would talk, Mark would tell me how smart Kidd was and from time to time share some aspects of Kidd’s personality which I found to be both interesting and great.

Then, Mark’s cancer returned with a vengeance.

Mark began to have significant trouble because this time the Melanoma returned in his brain.  It was very bad and we all thought for sure that he would die.  He didn’t.  What he did do was fight.  He took time off from work here, there and everywhere to fight the cancer and Kidd kept paying Mark.

No one at Kidd Kraddick complained to my knowledge.

Kidd looked the other way as Mark took time off to go to doctor’s appointments again and again and even back and forth from Dallas to Houston (where there is a very serious world-famous cancer hospital).  I don’t know how far beyond “official” sick time Mark took time off, but I know it must have been a huge amount of time because we talked a lot and it was clear that fighting this kind of cancer is just one of the most intense things I have ever seen.  It took time and effort away from Mark’s work, and you know in your heart that most employers will only tolerate so much of that.

Let me make this perfectly clear.  Mark was a warrior and a completely amazing enemy of Melanoma.  I am very proud of him for how he conducted himself and how effectively he attacked the cancer again and again.

Mark kicked Melanoma’s butt over and over.  This cancer didn’t know who it was messing with.  He survived and seemed to thrive after they cut the cancer from his brain.  And Kidd and his organization allowed Mark the freedom needed to continue to fight it.

Thank God.

It is a big deal when you have an employer who will stand up and allow you to take time away from work to fight cancer at the length Mark had to fight it

to win.

When Mark was in the hospital recently, he whispered to me, “Promise me you will tell people about what Kidd did.”

I did promise.  And I will tell.

You see, Mark called me earlier this year.  Things had gotten even worse in his intense fight with cancer.  He told me that the human resources person and the general manager finally called a meeting with him in the conference room.  Right now you are probably thinking what I did when Mark started to tell me about this meeting.  It’s exactly what Mark thought as he walked into that room.  I thought he had been fired because he had been out so much and for so long seeing doctors and having procedures.

But that wasn’t to be.

The human resources person took Marks’ hand and said they were all sorry for how difficult the fight had been for him.  Then, she asked what Mark would do if he didn’t have to worry about work for the next six months.  He didn’t understand.  He still thought he was getting fired.  She said, “What if you got paid just like normal, but you didn’t have to come in or work?”

Mark blinked.  And to be fair, he cried.  I cried when he told me.

“Kidd would like to give you the time,” she said.


Kidd Kraddick would like to give you the time.

That is what Kidd Kraddick did for Mark Pollitt.

I wish I could tell you that Mark won his war with Melanoma.  He didn’t.  But I can tell you that I am proud that Mark kicked Melanoma up and down and around Dallas, Texas (among other places) for a long time.  He and I laughed when I asked him what it was like to be my friend that defied gravity.  He knew exactly what I meant.  He “defied gravity” because he continued to live long past what the doctors said his life expectancy would be again and again.  I can also tell you I am personally grateful Mark worked for Kidd Kraddick.

I’m sure Kidd Kraddick is a person with flaws just like the rest of us.   We are all human.  I am not painting him as a superhero.  I am just sharing some things that meant a lot to Mark and a lot to me.   I have really warm feelings about someone who has worked so hard to build his own company from the ground up in a business dominated by consolidation and big companies that “own” talent.  And this guy – Kidd Kraddick – reached out to my friend in a time of serious need.  He protected him in my view and allowed him to fight to the end.  And I have lived up to my promise to tell you about this.  God bless you, Mark Pollitt.  You were a very good man and deserved every bit of help you ever received and much more.

Mark Pollitt was the kind of man that made you want to be a better person.  Go do something nice for someone today.  We are all connected.

Your Friend Forever,

Loyd Ford

If you understand why this story is important, please feel free to share it.  That way, more people will see it.  Thank you.

Mark Pollitt

Mark Pollitt

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