COLUMBIA — Fred Parry, radio host of "The Morning Meeting" on KFRU/1400 AM, was fired Tuesday morning following his broadcast.
Parry said Wednesday that John Walker, KFRU's marketing manager, called him into his office after Tuesday's broadcast and told him that the station "made a decision not to renew my contract." He said he was also told that Tuesday's show was his last.
Parry has worked for the station for the past 14 years. For the past seven and a half years, Parry and Simon Rose co-hosted The Morning Meeting, a daily news talk show from 9 to 11 a.m.
Parry said if he had known what was about to happen, he would have told his listeners on Tuesday, "This was a lot of fun. Thanks for letting me be your sounding board for the last 14 years."
The termination came as a surprise, Parry said, because although his contract had been under negotiation for the past three months, there had been no discussion about the last round of changes.
Brian Wilson took over for Parry on Wednesday. Neither he nor Rose mentioned the termination during the show. Parry's profile has since been removed from KFRU's Web site, and there is no information concerning the termination on the site.
Walker said the company does not comment on personnel matters. Wilson and Rose did not return calls Wednesday after multiple attempts to contact them.
Although Parry said that he sees the termination as a positive development, he said, "This is hard for me to put that chapter of my life behind me."
Parry, who is also the publisher of Inside Columbia magazine, said he plans to spend more time working at the publication. "I'm looking forward to making my magazine better than it already is," he said.
As for radio, Parry said, "I can see myself doing it again someday."
Ann Bozarth, who has worked with Parry in the past and said she often listened to "The Morning Meeting," said Parry will be missed. "He was such a good representative of KFRU because he is so involved in the community," she said.