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Lim­baugh speaks at Hillsdale Col­lege’s ninth annual Churchill Dinner in Wash­ington, D.C. in 2008. | Facebook

Look up “Rush Lim­baugh Hillsdale College” and the first thing that pops up is Hillsdale’s “Rush Lim­baugh Chal­lenge,” where you can take a Supreme Court quiz and get a free pocket Con­sti­tution from the college.

The long-time Hillsdale College sup­porter and radio talk show host died Wednesday, Feb. 16, after a battle with stage 4 lung cancer. Lim­baugh was 70 years old. 

Over the last 40 years, Lim­baugh became one of the most influ­ential voices on talk radio. At the height of his pop­u­larity, Lim­baugh had a weekly audience of 15.5 million listeners. 

Last year, former Pres­ident Donald Trump sur­prised Lim­baugh in his State of the Union speech by awarding him the Medal of Freedom. 

Hillsdale College Pro­fessor of Theatre James Brandon wrote his doc­toral dis­ser­tation at Bowling Green State Uni­versity on Lim­baugh and his inter­ac­tions with his audience. 

“There was cer­tainly a natural charisma there. There was con­fi­dence. He made things very simple for his audience,” Brandon said. “He had a knack for taking a complex political argument or debate, and sort of boiling it down, often in a humorous or sar­castic way, that was easy to understand.”

In 2008, Lim­baugh spoke at Hillsdale College’s Churchill Dinner in Wash­ington, D.C., receiving the Freedom Lead­ership Award. College Pres­ident Larry Arnn released a statement on the college’s Facebook fol­lowing the announcement of Limbaugh’s passing. 

“My friend Rush Lim­baugh, who died today, was a force of nature. More than any other indi­vidual, he was respon­sible for breaking the Left’s media monopoly,” Arnn wrote. “His voice on the radio, where he has pro­moted Hillsdale College for more than 10 years, will never be equaled.” 

Scot Bertram, general manager of WRFH, the campus radio station, said Lim­baugh saved AM radio. Pol­itics were the center of Limbaugh’s show, and future stories sur­rounding him will focus on that aspect, but above all, Lim­baugh was a talent, he said. 

“He was an expert enter­tainer, above all else,” Bertram said. “The most important part of the show, why it was so suc­cessful for so long, was that it was flat-out enter­taining. Rush knew when to inform. He knew when to entertain. He knew when to poke fun at the oppo­sition. He knew how to work the audience. You know how to work the clock. He knew how to hold an audience through a segment and over break all those things but most impor­tantly he was an entertainer.”

Junior Zac Ailes said he knew Lim­baugh well. The radio host called himself Ailes’ “older brother” and men­tored him on many matters, including where to attend college.

“Rush was a true friend to those in need, a patriot, and one of the kindest hearted people I’ve ever known,” Ailes said. “This country suf­fered a tremendous loss today and he’ll be missed by so many.”