All Day Radiothon Benefitting Backstoppers

The Home Loan Expert hosted an All-Day Radiothon November 14th, 2017 at the world headquarters, 1600 South Brentwood Avenue in St. Louis, benefiting Backstoppers.  We hosted 590 The Fan‘s The Morning After with Charlie Marlow, Doug Vaughn, and Jimmy “the Cat” Hayes, KSHE 95‘s John Ulett, Lern and Carl the Intern, 590’s Frank Cusumano, Martin Kilcoyne, and the returning Charlie Marlowe, 105.7 The Point‘s Donnie Fandango, and 101 ESPNs The Fastlane, with Randy Karraker, Chris Rongey and Mark Saxon in the office today.

The Radiothon is benefiting Backstoppers, as part of The Home Loan Expert’s 50 in 50 drive with KSHE, working to raise $50,000 for four local charities during KSHE’s 50th anniversary celebration.

Backstoppers is a St. Louis-based organizations that helps the families of First Responders if they give the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty.  They raised over 3 million dollars last year for the cause and currently help 87 families with expenses.  Backstoppers will cover many costs, from mortgage and car payments to medical costs to college tuition for the children of these fallen heroes.

Backstoppers has been led for the past 13 years by Executive Director Ron Battelle, former Chief of the St. Louis County Police Department.  Chief Battelle was kind enough to tell us about his 40-plus years of experience in the police department, where he  rose through the ranks to become the first officer in the 50-year history of the department to become Police Chief.

We were also joined by surviving family members of several St. Louis Police Officers who tragically lost their lives in the line of duty.  Susan King joined 590’s The Morning After to talk about her husband, Sgt. Michael King, who was ambushed and killed in his patrol car as he sat on October 31, 2008.  Sgt. King was a 25-year veteran of the University City Police Department.

Officer Joe Strehl then joined Frank Cusumano to talk about his father, Detective Steven J. Strehl, who was killed when Joe was 3 years old.  Detective Strehl was killed in the line of duty on November 19, 1993 when his helicopter crashed during a drug surveillance mission.  Detective Strehl served with the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and had been assigned to a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) task force.  Joe has followed in his father’s footsteps, becoming a police officer in his own right with the West County Precinct along with joining the Army after graduating from Missouri State University.

Kimberly Kowalski also joined Frank Cusumano to talk about her loss, her husband Sgt. Jeffry Kowalski, who was shot in 1987 while taking a suspect into custody and died in 2008.  Sgt. Kowalski served the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department for 21 years, before retiring in 1999 as a result of his gunshot wound.