Employees at rock station WCCC said their goodbyes Friday on what was, for many of them, their final day of work.
The station's new owners are implementing a Christian music format and many employees have been laid off.
Mike Karolyi, music director of 28 years, spent his last shift at the board playing interviews live and recorded, with voices from the station's past, including Howard Stern.
"Maybe I'm just getting old, getting nostalgic, but man oh man, it was such a great place and a great place for broadcasters," Stern said. "It's really strange. I really am affected by this."
Stern worked at WCCC for a year until a competitor arranged a job for him in Detroit, he said.
Karolyi said the station had progressed under Marlin Broadcasting, which took over WCCC in 1998.
"It seemed like every year we got better and better. Some of those years with Howard Stern in the morning, others without but no matter what the lineup was, man, the station became a very important brand and I hate to use that term but we were a brand. People knew The Rock, 106.9 WCCC and it stood for something," he said.
Still, as much as he and others tried to spin the end as a celebration, it was still the end, and Karolyi's eyes filled with tears as he signed off for the last time.