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Rich Apuzzo Loses 6-Month Battle With Brain Cancer

Apuzzo family

Meteorologist Rich Apuzzo died three weeks ago, but his grieving family has yet to plan a memorial service or publish an obituary.

“We’re still very broken,” says Ruthie Apuzzo, his wife of 28 years, who has been dealing with her own health issues the past month.

Apuzzo, 52, died on July 7, six months after announcing he had terminal brain cancer and no health insurance.

The couple owned and operated Skyeye Weather LLC, a weather consulting and education service, since he left WXIX-TV in 2006. He was Channel 19’s chief meteorologist from the station’s news premiere in 1993 until 2006.

On Jan. 11, he announced his cancer diagnosis and the "Rich Apuzzo Sunny Day Fund" at Fifth Third Bank, and on YouCaring.Com, to help pay medical expenses and provide for his wife and three sons, Ricky III, 26; Ron, 20; and Ryan, 15.

The fund is still open. Contributions may be made at any Fifth Third branch to the Rich Apuzzo Sunny Day Fund.

Here is how he described his condition:

“Imagine you go to bed healthy just two months ago back in December 2014, days before the Holidays...Literally healthy I mean, not even a cold, and then you get a little headache. The headache starts as a low “hum” in my head, and since I never get headaches it had me concerned… Two weeks later you find out you’ve got a mass in your brain that cannot be operated on and it should be terminal. So I’ve gone from zero problems health-wise to terminal in under two months. Kinda scary stuff….

“I have three amazing sons, the oldest is 25, the middle 19 going on 20 and planning for a degree in engineering in college, and the youngest at 14 going on 15. They have been a real testament to some good parenting, mostly by my wife… They are hard workers, and they’re the ones who are keeping me going here. So when I think about what I want to do, I think about them, their future, how I want to set them up in some way, and we’ll go from there. Oh, and I would be remiss If I didn’t credit my true love Ruthie who shared my goals through the years and is the owner of our small company, Skyeye Weather, which may not exist once I’m gone.”

WCPO-TV broadcast this interview with Apuzzo in February.

He grew up in Illinois, and studied geography and weather forecasting at Valparaiso University in Valparaiso, Ind. Before coming to Fox 19, Apuzzo did weather at KXAN-TV in Austin, Texas (1988-90) and WATM-TV/WWCP TV in Johnstown, Pa. (1991-93). He also did Skyeye forecasts for Hamilton’s WMOH-AM and the ClassX FM radio stations.

Apuzzo was cremated. 

John Kiesewetter, who has covered television and media for more than 35 years, has been working for Cincinnati Public Radio and WVXU-FM since 2015.