5:15pm Dothan’s Mike Gurspan has diedRickey Stokes
Posted by: RStokes
Date: Jan 31 2024 5:23 PM
DOTHAN — Mike Gurspan has been a household name in the Wiregrass for decades.
Mike passed away from brain cancer on Wednesday, January 31, at the age of 66.
mike was born in 1958 in Far Rockaway, Queens, to Jean Gurspan and Daniel Gurspan.
During his senior year, Gurspan was a kicker on the Florida Gators football team, cementing a love for the all-American sport that would last his entire life.
After graduating in 1980, the young reporter stayed in Florida and started at WJHG Channel 7 in Panama City.
Five years of working at Channel 7 eventually led Mike down the road to WMBB Channel 13, WDHN’s current sister station, where he took on a number of roles, including anchor, reporter, and even meteorologist.
Mike took a job at Dothan’s Channel 4 as bureau chief for Coffee and Geneva County. While working in the western Wiregrass, Gurspan formed professional and personal relationships that would last the rest of his life.
During those early years in the Wiregrass, Mike covered some of the biggest stories of his career, including the 1994 Elba floods, the 2007 tornado that destroyed Enterprise High School and left nine students dead, and the deadliest mass shooting in Alabama’s history: the killing spree of 28-year-old Michael Mclendon.
In late 2017, Mike left Channel 4, and in January 2018, he took over as sports director here at WDHN News.
Mike began having problems with blurry eyesight and double vision. In November 2023, he was diagnosed with brain cancer and sent to the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
There, Mike underwent a nearly four-hour surgery, and doctors were able to remove almost 95% of a malignant brain tumor. After his surgery, he returned to his home in Coffee Springs and began radiation and chemotherapy at Flowers Hospital in January 2024.
The Christian Mission in Enterprise held a fish fry fundraiser with the goal of raising $10,000 for Gurspan’s medical bills by selling catfish plates for $10 apiece.
Sadly, despite a multitude of efforts and treatments to stop the cancer, Mike passed away.
Mike leaves behind a sister, Katherine Gurspan, two nephews, Alex and Andrew Tobiassen, and many friends who will remember him as a kind, hardworking, and fun-loving confidant who could always make them laugh.