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Radio engineer Mark Zerang mounting brave fight against cancer


The thoughts and prayers of many of Chicago's most prominent radio personalities and executives are with freelance radio engineer Mark Zerang, who is mounting a brave fight against lung cancer. Zerang has in fact been battling cancer for more than two years, but only went public with his fight two weeks ago.

By all accounts, Zerang is considered a true legend in Chicago radio broadcasting circles, though he works behind the scenes, not in front of the microphone. Over the course of a career spanning more than 25 years, Zerang has worked with a wide array of familiar broadcasters, including Pat Foley, Tom Thayer, Troy Murray, Steve Dahl, Hub Arkush, Ed Farmer and many more.

"It was never about him; it is always about the games, the broadcasters and the fans," said Mitch Rosen, program director at CBS Radio Chicago's sports talk WSCR-AM (670). Zerang's one goal in his job has been to ensure the sound of whatever show he was working on was exactly what it needed to be for the listening public. Over the past quarter century, Zerang has engineered countless sporting events for radio, including Chicago Cubs, White Sox, Bears, Blackhawks and Bulls games. He also has enhanced the broadcasts of various talents beyond sports, including Dahl, Kevin Matthews and Orion Samuelson.

Many of the people who have worked with Zerang over the years have in recent days paid a visit to his home in Rogers Park to thank him and once again acknowledge their respect for him and his amazing skills.


Cousin Mark, we love you.

We love you Mark. Much love from the whole Gorski family

For many, many years Mark has been a member of the Heavy Manners family, mixing the band's signature dub/ska sound at countless gigs in Chicago and throughout the midwest. We love him as a great friend of all of ours and owe him a huge debt to the joy we have derived from how he mixed our music and how his artistry and personality elevated our experience as musicians. We are grateful.

Thanks Mark or Ziggy as we all called you. Thanks for making me sound better than I ever could actually play. But most of all thanks for being a dear friend for the better part of my adult life. You brought tons of mischief and laughter to our rehearsals and gigs. You made music fun. I love you Ziggy Wiggins.

I can only wish and hope that you find solace in the knowledge that you went about life the right way Mark....selflessly. How many people can really say that about themselves? You may never have felt like a role model for others, but you are! From everyone who ever stepped foot in ESPN 1000 since its inception, peace my brother.

Mark, my friend, such a friend, a brother, oh my God the fun we had together, he made me sound great, I sucked, he made me sound great. I love him and always will, we traveled the world together, his son will so miss his Dad, he was a great friend, life is short, Mark lived his, you should too.

Kevin Matthews

I met Mark in the early eighties, when I was working as a house sound mixer at "Broadway Jacks" night club on the cities north side.
One of Marks many talents was the ability to blend artistry with technology that touched the minds and ears of the musicians and engineers that had the privilege to work with him. For all of us that shared his affinity for "clean sound" and Frank Zappa,he will truely be missed.

Mark and I met at the Wild Hare when I was a bartender in the 1990s. He had a side job as the sound engineer but he also enjoyed hanging out at the bar. We spent many nites joking and talking, especially on really slow nites. Mark was as genuine as they get. I have thought about him often in the past 10 or so years and with each thought came a big smile.
My thoughts are with the Zerang family

Much Love,


Mark was not only a one of the best engineers ever, he found the humor in everything. This perhaps was his greatest gift to us.
Much love to Ziggy, your family and all those who had the pleasure of sharing a laugh with you.

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Lewis Lazare has written the Media Mix column for the Chicago Sun-Times for the past seven and a half years.

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This page contains a single entry by Lewis Lazare published on November 11, 2010 3:11 PM.

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