"Bad Dog" remembered for generosity, sense of humor

By Nick Kenney - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Solo in a somber studio Friday, Rock 103's Tim Spencer forged on through a difficult day.

"The city is abuzz with sadness and joy," Spencer said.

His friend, co-worker, and broadcasting partner, John 'Bad Dog' McCormack died Thursday night after a prolonged battle with cancer.  Friday, in tribute, Spencer filled the airwaves with old Bad Dog bits from his 20-plus years on the radio.

>>Click here to read Joe Birch's personal reflection on the life of Bad Dog<<

Off the air and around children, Bad Dog often turned into a harmless puppy - a soft side felt best at the Ronald McDonald House in Memphis.  Friday, the mood there was equally sober.

"We're all a little down," said executive director Caron Byrd.

Over the past 20 years, Bad Dog helped raise more than $7 million to house St. Jude cancer patients and their families.

"He built a legacy of generosity, of commitment and passion," Byrd said.

But it wasn't just the money McCormack was known for.  He often spent time with children at the house, trying to brighten their days.

"He'd do anything to make the kids laugh," Byrd said.

Funeral arrangements for McCormack were announced late Friday afternoon. A public memorial service will be held Monday at 2:00 p.m. at Hope Presbyterian Church on Walnut Grove, with a reception to follow at The Church of the Holy Communion also on Walnut Grove.

You can watch the public memorial service live on WMCTV.com.

A fund has been established at First Tennessee Bank. You can make donations to the "John McCormack Trust Fund."

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