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Tags: hackensack | meridian | garrett | i man

Yes Imus Was Controversial, He Was Also Generous

david jurist and don imus
David Jurist and Don Imus in an undated photo. (Credit, Ray Negron) 

Ray Negron By Monday, 30 December 2019 11:14 AM EST Current | Bio | Archive

On Friday I learned of the passing of radio personality, Don Imus.

I've heard of some of the controversial scenarios that he got involved in, but it's not those I wish to discuss. 

I fondly think of Don Imus as a kind man who was probably one of the most philanthropic individuals I've ever met.

I was introduced to the "I-Man" by another incredible and important man in my life, David Jurist.

I first met David at Hackensack University Medical Center when I took former Yankee, Ruben Sierra, there to visit some sick children. We became fast friends because we had one thing in common, our love for helping people.

In 2006, I published my first children’s book "The Boy of Steel."

David asked me if I would like to be on his friend’s radio show to promote my book.

I asked David who his friend was. He said, "it’s Don Imus from "Imus in the Morning."

I screamed, "Heck yeah."

The next day David took me to the radio station. I met Don Imus.

We got on the air and over night the book shot to number two on The New York Times Best Seller’s list. I met his wife, Diedre and saw what a great team they were.

I loved the friendship that Don genuinely had with David Jurist.

I have to add, I learned so much from watching the incredible charity work that "Team Imus" performed.

When you walk around Hackensack Medical center, you can’t help but notice the "Don Imus Wing."

Can you imagine what you have to do to have a structure like this in such a hospital; a  wing named after you. I will not get into the fact that this man also had a big ranch in New Mexico for children (regardless of denomination) who were struggling with different illnesses.

I’m not going to say that we were best friends, because we weren’t.

What I will say is that the few times that I was around him, he reminded me of the great philanthropic ways of George Steinbrenner.

It made me feel so good.

My deepest condolences to Diedre and her family and to the Jurist family and to Robert C. Garrett the president and CEO at Hackensack Meridian Health, these are some of the people who will truly feel this loss.

Thanks Don for your worldly contributions, and the fact that you cared so much for all children.

Ray Negron is a sports executive with over 40 years of experience in baseball. His first job came from a chance encounter with George Steinbrenner as a youth. He has become an American film producer, a best-selling author, and a philanthropist. His memoir is entitled, "Yankee Miracles: Life with the Boss and the Bronx Bombers." For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

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Thanks Don Imus for your worldly contributions, and the fact that you cared so much for all children.
hackensack, meridian, garrett, i man
Monday, 30 December 2019 11:14 AM
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