Ex-radio DJ Kate Reyes dies, aged 41, after battle with breast cancer

Radio DJ Kate Reyes has died after a battle with breast cancer. -- PHOTO: KATE REYES
Radio DJ Kate Reyes has died after a battle with breast cancer. -- PHOTO: KATE REYES

SINGAPORE - Former radio DJ Kate Reyes has died after a battle with breast cancer.

The 41-year-old, who was last with MediaCorp's Lush 99.5FM, was remembered in a touching Facebook tribute by former colleague and Singapore Press Holdings' Kiss 92FM radio DJ Claressa Monteiro.

 

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Monterio, 45, told The Straits Times: "Kate the person and Kate the DJ were in some ways very similar. I came late to radio. When we first met, I was a radio rookie and she was already an industry veteran. She was generous with her experience and free with her guidance. This woman did nothing in halves. She gave completely and unreservedly. It's what made her such a great DJ, what made her such a great person. She was one of a kind, unique, irrepressible, impressive and oh so loving. I'll miss her. And I'll miss that amazing sultry voice."

Said another Kiss 92 Radio DJ John Klass: "Kate was a highly ambitious talent. She had a one-of-a kind radio voice which exuded a sultry and easy style. I always expected to hear her on the airwaves again someday, where she belonged."

Kiss 92’s assistant programme director, Maddy Barber, who was, like Reyes, part of the MediaCorp radio station then known as Perfect 10 in the 1990s, said: “I remember that Kate was not an easy person to get to know as she was very private. But once I got to know her, she became a fiercely loyal friend with a wicked sense of humour and an honest streak I could always count on to give it to me straight. I'm privileged to have worked with her and call her friend in the last years before she passed."

Reyes, who graduated with a diploma in business from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, started out as a DJ on Perfect 10 at the age of 21. In 2001, she joined WKRZ 91.3 FM, which was then run as a joint venture between SPH MediaWorks and NTUC Media.

Reyes was married to fellow DJ Glenn Ong for two years. They split in 2001. After the former Perfect 10 DJ quit radio, she set up jewellery store Elizabeth Kate, which specialised in jade designs. Reyes leaves behind a husband and two children.