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Rocky Mount Radio Station Out of the Water, Back on the Air

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ROCKY MOUNT — Six months after Hurricane Floyd, the recovery process continues. Many flood victims are being inspired by two of Rocky Mount's best-known radio stations, which are making comebacks of their own.

The building that housed radio station Soul 92 and WEED-AM in Rocky Mount held seven feet of water after Floyd. Its antenna doubled over in the river's current.

"The place was a mess when we got here. We had creepy, crawly things -- snakes, a few fish," says Chuck Johnson, Northstar Broadcasting vice president.

The FM station was back on the air within days.

"For about eight weeks we broadcast using equipment that I had in my house," says Johnson. "My little studio at home was the radio station for roughly eight weeks."

Soul 92 is on the mend. After laying off about 80 percent of its staff, most employees are back.

DJ Derrick Alston, known to his fans as "D-Train," says it took a lot of hard work to get back on the air.

"Our music was buried under water and mud. We actually had to hand clean all of the music for the station," he says.

Fans like Chad Cobb appreciate their favorite station even more these days.

"They keep you informed about what's going on around town. It's a nice home station," says Cobb.

WEED-AM is expected to return to the air in about eight weeks. The transmitter at WEED-AM will be elevated, and the station will be located in the same building that flooded.

The FM station will remain in its new office, located downtown.

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Brian Bowman, Reporter
Brian Bowman, Photographer
Michelle Singer, Web Editor

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