Nov 23, 2011

Brian Eckstein of Indiana Public Radio dies at 40

Brian Eckstein, production manager at Indiana Public Radio and a volunteer at the station since high school, died unexpectedly Monday (Nov. 21) at his home in Muncie, Ind. He was 40.

"Chances are, if you live around here, your life has been touched somehow, in some way, by Brian Eckstein," wrote the Star Press in Muncie.

"His small shoes leave an enormous space to fill at the radio station, and in our hearts," Angie Rapp, marketing manager of WIPB and IPR, told the paper. Eckstein was recognized as an Outstanding Alumnus by the Disabled Student Development Office of Ball State University.

Eckstein had long battled health problems: Two kidney transplants, cancer (twice), leg braces and near-blindness. "But he never complained," the paper said. "He never played the sympathy card."

He received a kidney in 2004 from friend Lee Ann Mengelt. "I felt blessed being able to share something I had with a man who truly touched absolutely every person that he met," she said. "One thing Brian always carried with him was his dignity and compassion. I'll now carry that with me, forever."

His funeral Mass will be 3 p.m. Friday at St. Francis of Assisi (1200 West Riverside Ave., Muncie, Ind., 47303-3692). Gant Funeral Home, Yorktown Chapel, is handling arrangements.

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