The host of a nationally syndicated radio show was seriously injured Thursday afternoon in a motorcycle crash near Mount Spokane State Park.
Laurie Roth, affectionately called the “Annie Oakley of the airwaves” by listeners, was airlifted to Sacred Heart Medical Center after she collided with a deer on state Highway 206 about 3:30 p.m., said Washington State Patrol Trooper Jeff Sevigney. She was listed in critical condition Thursday night.
Roth, 45, is broadcast locally 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. weekdays on KQNT 590 AM. Produced in Spokane, her show is heard on about 40 stations nationwide.
“She examines each issue from her heart,” said Rick Still, producer of “The Laurie Roth Show.” “She’s totally independent from start to finish.”
Roth was riding her 1980 Honda motorcycle west just past the entrance of the state park when the collision happened, Sevigney said. Another motorcyclist who was riding in front of Roth noticed she wasn’t following and turned around and found her.
She was wearing a helmet but sustained head injuries, Sevigney said.
Roth’s show started two years ago after a brief stint on KGA 1510 AM. Still said her show leans conservative.
“Laurie is just an absolute kick in the pants,” said Kosta Panidis, market manager for Clear Channel Spokane, which owns KQNT. “She’s one of the very few women talk show hosts that does the kind of show she does.”
Before coming to radio in Spokane, Roth was a professional singer and hosted a PBS show on which she interviewed famous musicians including Billy Ray Cyrus and Al Green.
On Thursday, a taped show was aired. Still said the show likely will use a mix of substitute hosts and reruns until Roth is healthy again.
“I know she is a fighter,” Still said. “I do fully expect she will be back on the air.”