DEBBIE NORRELL

DEBBIE NORRELL

Earlier this month, the Pittsburgh community was saddened to find out about the death of Kris Kelley, the former mid-day personality and music director at WAMO during the mid-90s. I had the pleasure of working with Kelley and loved watching her work and listening to her on the air. We worked in adjacent studios with a glass wall that allowed us to see into each other’s workspace. Her voice was as beautiful as she was.

One day, Kelley received a beautiful bouquet of flowers at the studio and the card simply read, “U Send Me Swinging.” I think the ladies in the studio were impressed with that beautiful message, at least I was impressed that this cleaver admirer would sign the card with the title of a track from the Mint Condition album, “The Mint Factory.”

Kelley went on to bigger and better things, and worked in Detroit and Chicago. According to radiofacts.com, it has been learned from industry resources, via the coroner, that Kelley, who was found dead in her apartment, choked while eating in her apartment alone.

Kris Kelley

Kris Kelley

Reportedly Kelley had not been in touch with a majority of the industry for months. When I found out the cause of her death, I thought how often we all eat alone and what would I do in a case like this. There have been many times where food, or even water, goes down the wrong way and I have choked to the point of tears. Sometimes I am so hungry that I eat my food too fast to even enjoy it.

My personal advice is to take time and chew your food when you are eating, and if you do choke, hopefully you will remember not to panic. I logged into several websites and here is the advice that is given if you are alone and choking.

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