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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

3/27: Morning Mash with former Praise host Sonya Hamm passing, “Big Brother” casting call

 

Sonya Hamm, former morning host at Praise 97.5(now at 102.5), passed away Wednesday from colon and abdomen cancer, her husband of 24 years Gary Hamm told me Thursday afternoon.

“She had a natural connection with people,” said Praise program director Derek Harper. “You don’t have a lot of jocks like her anymore. People felt her reach through the radio to embrace them.”

Hamm, a Durham native and Atlanta resident, spent most of her radio career in that Raleigh/Durham area at a gospel station. She moved to Atlanta in 2004 to be the new morning host at Praise. In 2007, when Praise owners decided to launch the syndicated morning show starring Yolanda Adams, Hamm was moved to mid days.

Last August, Praise let her go for budgetary reasons. Hamm, her husband said, was in the midst of starting her own radio Web site and he had helped build a studio at their home.

Gary Hamm said she started going downhill about a month ago but was grateful he got to say goodbye. 

Her former colleagues at Praise said they knew she was sick (she had taken a medical leave at one point during her tenure at Praise), but had no idea she was in such a bad state.

“She loved movies,” said Praise promotions manager Cie Cie Wilson McGhee. “She was an extra in a couple of Tyler Perry movies.” She was also into soul food. Wilson McGee recalled two favorites: the Original Big Daddys Smokehouse BBQ Grill in Decatur and This is It BBQ in East Point. For kicks, they nicknamed each other “Muffin.”

“We used to say that in the hallways,” Wilson McGhee said. “People are affectionate at the station. We are always hugging and stuff.”

Atlanta gospel singer Dottie Peoples said she was shocked by Hamm’s passing. “A fallen radio angel has gone,” she said.

When Hamm was in Raleigh, “she used to interview me on her morning show.” Peoples said. “I used to fuss at her because it was so early in the morning. But you couldn’t tell her no.” She said she used to tease Hamm by asking, “Where’s the breakfast and grits?”

When Hamm moved to Atlanta, Peoples would listen to her on the radio and call in. Hamm would teasingly turn the tables on Peoples and ask, “Are the grits ready?” Peoples’ response? “I ain’t going to cook no breakfast!”

Greg Hamm said she loved to travel and take cruises. She was also a fan of the beach. The couple would regularly go to the Outer Banks in N.C. and Myrtle Beach, S.C. when they lived in North Carolina and more recently Tybee Island in Georgia. 

She was a member of the World Changers Church International under Dr. Creflo A. Dollar. Her funeral services are going to be Tuesday (March 31) at Christian Faith Center in Creedmoor, N.C. in conjunction with Burthey Funeral Services in Durham, N.C. Viewing is at noon, services at 1 p.m., followed by burial, Greg Hamm said.

You can place your condolences at her Web site sonyahammlive.com.

-On a much more frivolous note, do you like CBS’s summer reality show “Big Brother”? I don’t. But if you want to be on the show, there’s an open casting at Rock Bottom Brewery in Buckhead at 3242 Peachtree Road Saturday from noon to 6. There is no specific skill set needed for this show, just a wily personality that pops on camera and a willingness to be on TV 24/7 for weeks on end. Also check outwww.cbs.com/casting to get an application. The show would air this summer and you might be trapped in that house for weeks on end. Fortunately, there are plenty of unemployed or under-employed people out there to fill the spots.

-The numbers for NBC’s failed reality show “The Chopping Block” keep getting scarier. The third episode, in which Atlantans Panya Rice and Michael Holmes were eliminated, attracted just 2.6 million viewers. The opening episode drew 3.8 million two weeks ago. The typical NBC show attracts at least 7 million viewers during primetime. These numbers are even worse  than a typcal “Top Chef” episode on Bravo, where episodes get repeated umpteenth times per week. I’m surprised NBC hasn’t already ditched this loser. (UPDATE: The show was indeed axed on Thursday.)

83 comments Add your comment

Barbara Hubert

March 26th, 2009
9:36 pm

She will be miss, I first met her last year at (womem on fire).

you all are in my prayer

Margaree Johnson

March 26th, 2009
10:03 pm

Right when I was about to throw in the towels-I was on the verge of committing suicide about 3years ago but, because of Mrs.HAMM -I did not die and untimely death…she will be GREATLY MISSED! MAY SHE REST IN PEACE! FOR A JOB WELL DONE!!!!

Cornelius Magee

March 26th, 2009
10:27 pm

She was just a Vivacious Hostess and will be truly missed.
My prayers goes out to the Hamm family.

Keisha Thompson

March 26th, 2009
10:27 pm

GOD HAS CALLED HOME ONE OF HIS TRUE PRAISE WARRIORS. MS. SONYA HAMM WILL BE GREATLY MISSED IN ATLANTA. MY CONDOLENCES TO THE FAMILY. HER LIGHT WAS ALWAYS SHINING AND FOR THAT, SERVANT WELL DONE! REST MY SISTER!

angel

March 26th, 2009
10:37 pm

My Lord! Bless Your Holy name. Sonya will surely be missed. As I was listening to 102.5 while leaving work, I heard CoCo Brother say “let’s keep the family of Sonya Hamm in our prayers”. I naturally thought that she had lost a loved one. It wasn’t until he said “we lost her last night” that I realized that he wasw referring to Sonya. My heart dropped. She was an instrument of inspiration, and healer of broken hearts so many of us. To the family, it’s okay to grieve, it’s okay to cry, it’s even okay to question God; but, do know that God does not make any mistakes. Hold on to your memories and cherish them forever.

Wilma Hopkins

March 26th, 2009
10:43 pm

I will really miss her she took me to work every morning when she was on in the morning. I really enjoyed her especially hamm eggs amd grits.

Why???

March 26th, 2009
11:05 pm

With great sadness, I send my condolescenes to the Hamm Family. I pray their strength in the Lord during this time.

t.law

March 26th, 2009
11:10 pm

I was shocked and surprised. She will surely be missed: by her World Changers Church family, her radio listeners, her many fans, the companies whose products she represented, and by the Body of Christ, and all those whose lives she touched through her ministry. Strength and Peace to her family. We love you Sonya. You touched all of our lives, and truly made an impact that can never be erased.

Teresa Smith

March 26th, 2009
11:24 pm

I was very sad to hear on the radio today. May god bless her family. I felt like I knew her enjoying listening to her in the morning. I read she enjoyed visiting Myrtle Beach when she lived in North Carolina. That my home town MB. May God continue to give strength to family. Sonia rest in peace!

Ken Phillips

March 27th, 2009
2:31 am

This is your neighbor and friend from Durham, NC. I have never listened to your radio spots but remember our talks after you got home from your broadcasting. Sonya thank you for speaking at the eulogy of Gretchens memorial service. And God bless you Gary and all condolences to the family. You were a truly blessed person. Kenny P

Nicole

March 27th, 2009
6:52 am

Loved her spirit and personality–the Light 103.9 has not been the same since she relocated to GA. I even occasionally logged in to Praise 97.5 at work to catch her, since I live in NC. The entire family is in my prayers.

Daunte'

March 27th, 2009
7:03 am

I am a resident of the Raleigh-Durham area of North Carolina, and feel like this is the second time that we have had to deal with loosing Mrs. Hamm. The first when she moved to Atlanta to futher her career, and now. She was my morning inspration for years on 103.9, and it was a joy to wake up, get dressed, and drive to work listening to her, and as a breakfast club member, she made us in North Carolina connect with one another on a daily bases, especially when it was time to call in to help a breakfast club buddy. It was always a treat to hear her say “Sonya Hamm that’s two M’s no lettuce and no tomatoe”. To the Hamm Family, thank for sharing her with us, and may God bless and keep you all.

Alfred

March 27th, 2009
8:36 am

I first hear Sonya Hamm on “The Light” when it started in the Raleigh/Durham area in 1998 (I beleive). I spoke with her when you could call in a birthday/anniversary announcement, I remember her when she hosted the Spiritual Awakening Show on Sunday mornings at 8:00 AM and when she went to Hollywood, California to be contestent on the show “The Price Is Right”, she talked about meeting the host Bob Barker, she was so excited.
To her husband and family members; may God bless you all and keep you uplifted in his grace. Mrs. Hamm will be missed. Thank you!

Patricia Mabry

March 27th, 2009
8:46 am

I LISTENED TO SONYA HAMM EVERY MORNING ON MY WAY TO WORK BEFORE HER TIME SLOT WAS MOVED TO 10:00AM.

Nikki

March 27th, 2009
9:23 am

Mrs Hamm will be missed greatly, may her soul rest in perfect peace of our LORD JESUS CHRIST. My prayer goes to the family, may God comfort them at this time of loss.

Janice Billingslea

March 27th, 2009
9:33 am

Mrs. Hamm, I will miss you. Sonya’s pleasant voice and calming personality was always an inspiration to me; She truly lived out her destiny. Our prayers are with her family.

Angela Scott

March 27th, 2009
9:39 am

I have listende to Sonya Hamm my prayer goes to her husband of 24 years, and her family, may God comfort them at this time of their loss she will Forever in Our Hearts.

Pat Morris

March 27th, 2009
9:40 am

Ms. Hamm has been truly inspirational to many of us. May God continue to strenghten the family. I believe that we will meet on the other side. God Bless you all.

Corliss Johnson

March 27th, 2009
9:49 am

Enter your comments here

Kenneth&Evelyn Royster

March 27th, 2009
9:57 am

We will miss her dearly, she was an inspiration on the light 103.9,listening to her early in the morning was a great way to start the day because she spoke the word of life,and at mid-day they would repeat it,she was famous for saying this is Sonya Hamm NO EGGS JUST HAMM,thats Hamm with two M’s,she left a great legacy.

Valerie

March 27th, 2009
9:59 am

I was shocked to hear of her passing yesterday. I remember her from a local gospel radio station (103.9 The Lite) here in Raleigh NC. She was always so bubbly and upbeat and had a kind word. She will be missed. My prayers and condolences go to her family, friends and those who knew her. God bless.

Sheila Wilkins

March 27th, 2009
10:25 am

Sonya Hamm will turly be miss by many people she came in contact with and her listeners on praise 97.5. She was a very anointed person who could lift your spirit.She always had a word of comfort for you to think about. My prayer and condolences go the her family and friends. May God Bless and Comfort you.

Rick Crank

March 27th, 2009
10:48 am

God bless Sonya’s soul and welcome her home. Bless her family during this difficult period. You’ll be missed!

Rick Crank

March 27th, 2009
10:49 am

Enter your comments here

Katie Clifton

March 27th, 2009
10:55 am

I live in the Durham area, Mrs Hamm has been an inspiration to my life’s journey, I send my condolences to her family, may God bless you all.

C. Flowers

March 27th, 2009
11:29 am

I am saddened to hear the news. May God continue to bless her entire family.

Vera Longino

March 27th, 2009
11:34 am

I feel as though there is a whole in my heart this morning. I did not know her personally, but that says alot about a person when they can leave that type of impression in your heart. I pray that God will comfort and strenthen the family in their time of sorrow. She will truly be missed by many.

Andrea

March 27th, 2009
11:37 am

Sonya Hamm will truly be missed. As one of her many loyal praise listners she was the voice that took me to work each day. I am comforted in knowing that she is in a much better place. She was a solider who not only talked the talk but walked the walk. I am honared to have had the pleasure of receiving her wisdom, witnessing her faith and basking in her joy. Many of us will miss her dearly but the seeds that she planted within so many will continue to grow.

Well done Sonya, well done.

Ruth Hunt

March 27th, 2009
11:40 am

I enjoyed listening to Sonya Hamm, I did not go into work without listening to 103.9 The Light. I rarely joined any clubs, but I was a avid member of “The Breakfast Club”. Sonya always wanted to find help for callers that were in trouble. She will truly be missed. God bless the Hamm family.

Janet McCullers

March 27th, 2009
11:44 am

Mr. Hamm, God needed someone very special & qualified to handle his gospel radio station, and Mrs. Hamm is the one he chose. All will be well. Keep the faith and may God bless and keep you always.

Tim Austin

March 27th, 2009
11:55 am

Sonya will truly be missed! I am a primitive baptist servant and I wake up on Saturday morning, just to listen to “A taste of Tradition”. I love traditional gospel music and thank her for her influence and work she did while God allowed her time on earth! Well done and may you rest in peace! “Dont sit down, you just got to heaven, got to walk around and you cant sit down!” (Old Primitive Spiritual song)

PJ/LINDA HARRIS-ATLANTA

March 27th, 2009
11:57 am

Enter your comments here

PJ/LINDA HARRIS-ATLANTA

March 27th, 2009
12:10 pm

Enter your comments here We really enjoyed listening to Sonya Hamm. She truly was an inspiration to the listening audience in our community. We pray that the Lord bless and comfort the Hamm family and friends. You will know them by their fruits. She is truly a child of GOD.

S.LOVE

March 27th, 2009
1:01 pm

SONYA WILL TRULY BE MISSED BY MANY. SHE WAS A GREAT INSPIRATION TO ME IN THE MORNING. I APPRECIATE THE ENCOURAGEMENT THAT WAS GIVEN BY HER DAILY.
GOD BLESS THE HAMM FAMILY IN JESUS NAME.

STEVE SATTERFIELD

March 27th, 2009
1:31 pm

SONYA WILL TRULY BE MISSED BY SO MANY..JUST LIKE I MISSED HER AFTER WE STOP WORKING TOGETHER AT THAT LITTLE OL’ AM RADIO STATION IN DURHAM,NC (WDUR-1490)BACK IN THE MID 80′S, I WILL MISS HER ON & ON. WE DID MORNINGS TOGETHER,SONYA DOING NEWS AND I WAS THE MORNING HOST. IT WAS WHEN I LEFT SONYA SWITCHED FROM NEWS TO RADIO ANGEL AND THE REST IS HISTORY. WE USED TO CALL EACH OTHER EATING BUDDIES BECAUSE BOTH OF US LOVED TOO EAT & SHARED ALOT OF LUNCHES TOGETHER, BOY THOSE WERE THE DAYS…. SONYA R.I.P

Johnson Family

March 27th, 2009
1:38 pm

I placed a comment on her web.. she will bwe missed

a.l.

March 27th, 2009
2:46 pm

Ms. Hamm will be missed. I listened to her on the Light raido in NC and attended the same church she attend, CFC/Creedmoor/NC. She had a wonderful spirit and it lives on!

Sparkle Buissereth

March 27th, 2009
3:48 pm

Be still and know that he is near. He shall seek me and find me, I shall search for him with all my heart. Have faith – Trust don’t be weary even if we are burden be strong. The faint shall renew their strength in the coming of his Glory. I miss You Sonya you have change my life and gave me hope, I was glad to be able to speak to you on the radio several times during my deperession your words were comforting I will never ever forget you “God bless.

Sparkle

Shelia C. Pyles

March 27th, 2009
4:08 pm

Sonya was a powerful woman of God. I loved to hear her on 97.5 when she lived in the Raleigh/Durham area. Her personality spoke for itself.
Her smile would brighten your day and the spirit she had was a uplifting spirit. God has picked a special flower to add to his heavenly garden.

Laurita

March 27th, 2009
4:42 pm

Truly Ms. Sonya Hamm had an inspiring word and heavenly spirit on the Raleigh Durham radio. Truly God picks his flowers one by one and she will be missed by some of my family who live in Atlanta who listended to her encouraging word.

Diane Rodriguez-Burton

March 27th, 2009
5:44 pm

When I heard Brother Larry Jones say, “please keep the family of their dear friend Sonya Hamm in prayer and that she will certainly be missed at 102.5″, I felt dumb struct! I immediately try to find out if that message meant she had gone on to meet the Lord, or could I have heard wrong. Please accept my sincere condolences, Jesus assures us of God’s never failing love and care, even when we lose someone so dear to us. He walks besides us, no matter what. Sonya will most certainly be missed, she was a great inspiration. May God bless and strengthen you during your time of bereavement. Love, Sister Burton

LM

March 27th, 2009
6:44 pm

That was so disrespectful and inappropriate to air the reality show’s casting call on this page. I’m highly appalled. Sonya Hamm RIP.

Gwen Palko

March 27th, 2009
6:50 pm

When Sonya was the morning host for 103.9 The Light, all the hosts had a jingle. Sonya’s jingle was Sonya Hamm/ with lettuce, tomato and no pickles. I often wondered what that sandwhich would taste like. She was a lady of my heart. I loved the inspirational feeling she expressed to her listeners. When she left The Light, I was saddened, but I knew she was leaving behind others that would take up behind her like Melissa Wade/In the Water. We all will be sad but I know she is singing in Heaven. God Be The Glory!

Chikita

March 27th, 2009
7:01 pm

I am extremely shocked by the news. My sincere condolences go out to the family and friends of Mrs. Hamm.

Alonda ? Atlanta

March 27th, 2009
7:24 pm

You’ve gone home Sonya now rest in peace for the battle was not yours it was the Lords. On another note 97.5 has not been the same without Sonya Hamm it went from her soothing calm get you through the day voice with her ham eggs and grits to a loud irratating ungratifying mess in the mornings not to mention That So Called Gospel Rap which is so aggravating and the commercials are just phenominal So I just stopped listening period. Sonja’s inspiration will truly be missed. To the family Love and Peace be unto you in Jesus name “Amen”

Bree ? Atlanta

March 27th, 2009
9:48 pm

Wow. I am stunned but know that God knows best. Many condolences go out from my family to the Hamm Family. I was not sure what happened to Sonya Hamm. I stopped listening to the show not long after the morning change due to the same annoyances that Alonda?Atlanta shared above. I thought it was just me. I contine to pray that the anointing of God takes over the show again through the vessel that is there. My God also bless the Hamm Family.

Angelia

March 27th, 2009
10:44 pm

I am lost for words. I listened to Sonya in the mornings. When I felt down and discouraged her radio show in Atlanta would lift me up.
Rest in Peace Sonya in the arms of Angels. May unmeasurable blessings be with the Hamm family.

Cathy

March 28th, 2009
12:51 am

Mr. Ho. Do you really think that this very poorly written article of yours about sister Hamm took anything away from her? Do you really believe that the folk associated with “Praise” broadcasting had that much to do with her connection or disconnection to the airwaves? Oh God, my heart aches when I am so often harshly reminded of the puffed up pride of man. God sent Sonya to Atlanta and He released her when He was ready. She truly was a “mouth piece for God” whose voice was heard in the North, South, East, and West. It would take many many chapters to tell of how she positively impacted the lives of many. Much Godly seed has been planted. Sonya is no longer with us, but with the Lord. But I tell you the truth, this not the end of her story. There is no end in eternity. Godly seed IS eternal seed. Meditate on this Mr. Ho. What kind of seed are you planting? The big question for you is not when will your story end, but where does it end? Eternal life or Death? If you ever decide to follow the Way, embrace the Truth, and see the Light, your writing will EDIFY the body of Christ, Glorify God, bless your readers, and it will bless you too. To Gary and Bonnie, I will miss Sonya dearly and may the Lord comfort you both. When I heard that she was gone, I cried with a heavy heart. Then I had to praise Him with the dance, as I laughed and cried with joy in my heart. She’s still the Winner!

CAROLYN STERLING

March 28th, 2009
8:59 am

ALL MY PRAYERS GOES OUT TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY.I NEVER GOT A CHANCE TO MEET MS. HAMM BUT I LISTEN TO HER EVERY MORNING FOR A COUPLE OF YRS.IT WAS SOME MORNINGS I JUST DID’NT FILL LIKE GOING ON SHE ENCOURAGE ME JUST BY LISTING TO HER ON 97.5.I KNEW SHE WAS SICK.SHE WILL BE TRULLY MISSED WHEN I HEARD SHE PASSED ON YESTERDAY I JUST BROKE DOWN AND START CRYING.AND TO BE TRUE I HAVE BEEN HAVING PAINS IN MY LEFT BREST FOR OVER

Michelle

March 28th, 2009
9:43 am

She was a true women of God, She would be missed. Another angel who has left our station. She will meet her friend Connie.
Bless the Hamm Family.