HAWTHORNE, N.J. — That her career began with a flourish at an I Heart Radio station in 1997 mattered little to Cindy Vero of Hawthorne when it ended abruptly and without explanation in 2014.
She landed on her feet only two months later -- but that time in-between was filled with confusion and more than enough reason reason for the animated Westwood native to give up hope.
“It’s like you’re sitting at a light and you get T-boned by a truck,” said Vero, who was replaced by a friend of someone at the station just before her 10th wedding anniversary. “It’s not even right — I know life’s not fair, but this was really messed up.”
Sales were swinging and ratings were rising, said Vero who was still contracted for another 6 months at I Heart Radio. But she was in the dark about an alleged programming change, she said.
“Whether you work somewhere for 13 years or five minutes, you can’t get any roots. "That’s the type of life we’re living. They don’t want you to succeed.”
An I Heart Radio spokesperson confirmed Monday that Vero had left the station, then transferred Daily Voice's call. A voicemail was left.
Mornings without Vero on the air were different for commuters.
Fans asked on the station’s Facebook page, where the former traffic and and morning show host had gone so suddenly. Local businesses changed the station that for decades had been streaming in their stores, Vero said.
After a month of unemployment, Vero began racking up gigs for on-air work until landing a full-time contract at Cumulus’ 955 PLJ and Nash 94.7. She kept the side jobs at Magic 98.3 and K104.7 WHUD and got more voice work and emceeing.
Vero says she knows she's made it because people recognize her voice over the phone, often when she's ordering food. She sometimes catches herself on the radio, too.
Now on the other side of it, Vero wouldn't change a thing.
"I learned a lot about people," she said. "I am incredibly grateful for where I am and how those who surrounded me helped me."
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