Dan Sileo no longer with WDAE 620-AM after "monkeys'' remark

One day after referring to three African-American NFL players as "monkeys,'' WDAE 620-AM morning host Dan Sileo is no longer employed by the station. WDAE program director Steve Versnick would not use the word "fired,'' but said Tuesday that, "Dan Sileo is no longer with WDAE. We wish him the best.''

Versnick had no other comment. Sileo did not immediately return messages seeking comment.

Sileo's controversial remark came Monday when he was talking about the possibility of three free agents — Cortland Finnegan, Vincent Jackson and Jonathan Vilma, all of whom are African-American — joining the Bucs. Sileo, who is white, said, "If they got those three monkeys, I'm good. I'm ready, man. I'm ready. I want those guys. Those guys are great players.''

At first, it appeared as if Sileo, 49, would not be punished.

Late Monday, WDAE issued a statement apologizing for Sileo's remark and saying, "He absolutely meant no disrespect to the players and he is sincerely embarrassed and upset that his off-the-cuff remarks might be taken as hateful, disrespectful, or in any way racist.''

In a Twitter message to the Times early Tuesday, Sileo said, "I didn't even realize I said it 'til someone told me.''

Sileo, who had been with the station since 1998, hosted the show as usual Tuesday morning, but by the afternoon, he was out.

Versnick said the search for a new morning host is underway. Rock Riley will host the 6 to 9 a.m. show today.

Dan Sileo no longer with WDAE 620-AM after "monkeys'' remark 03/13/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 9:31pm]

© 2014 Tampa Bay Times

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...