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Former KTAR host Bill Straus passes away after battle with cancer

(Facebook Photo)

PHOENIX — Bill Straus, former KTAR host and regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, passed away Saturday night after battling pancreatic cancer.

Straus, 69, was originally diagnosed in late 2017.

Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton took to social media to pay his respects to Straus.

“Bill Straus made our community better for everyone and his passing is a huge loss,” Stanton wrote on Twitter. “His KTAR radio show shared inspiring stories that touched us all. As head of the ADL, he worked with Phoenix police to fight hate crimes and provide support to victims. We will miss him dearly.”

In the 1990s, Straus was on the airwaves as the host of KTAR’s Straus Place. The radio show ran for eight years and covered numerous topics during that time, usually stirring up debates. In 2017, he was a part of the Tip of the Hat to Pat McMahon roast.

Before he was a radio host, he worked at Turf Paradise as a horse-racing announcer.

After his eight-year stint with the station, Straus took over as the regional director of the ADL after already being honored by the organization and working some of its functions.

He inspired others with his work, including Rana Singh Sodhi, who used his brother’s death following 9/11 to help educate people on the Sikh culture. His brother was shot and killed after someone was trying to retaliate against the terrorists who caused the tragedy. Straus spent 13 years as regional director before retiring in 2014.

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