Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Entertainment

April 8, 2013

Mom: 'BUCKWILD' star a Christian, now in heaven

(Continued)

"He said, 'See ya, Rick!' and I said, 'See ya, drunk!" recalled Sater, who got the terrible news days later in a phone call.

"My sister told me about it, and it being April Fool's, I thought she was joking. But she wasn't," he said, swallowing hard. "I try to keep my emotions balled up, but I started breaking down about six hours later."

Shooting was underway on season two at the time of Gandee's death, but MTV spokesman Jake Urbanski said film crews were not with him over Easter weekend and hadn't filmed him since earlier that week.

MTV says it will be weeks before producers and cast members decide whether to continue. For now, the network said, everyone is focused on supporting Gandee's family.

Katrina Burdette, 25, of Cross Lanes, didn't know Gandee but is friends with his cast mate, Ashley Whitt. Burdette has watched every episode and wants to see more.

"I think it should go on. Give them time to mourn and everything, but he'd want the show to go on," she said. "He wanted to be in the show and keep it going, so why not — in his memory — keep it going?"

MTV said the half-hour series in the old "Jersey Shore" time slot was pulling in an average of 3 million viewers per episode since its premiere and was the No. 1 original cable series on Thursday nights among 12- to 34-year-olds.

Others, like his neighbors the Framptons, say the show just won't be the same.

"They should just leave well enough alone," Charlie Frampton said.

But he won't object if the show survives. It's bringing people to West Virginia, and he rejects the notion that it portrays the state in a negative light.

"They're just showing what true country is," he said. "It's no worse than that 'Teen Mom.'"

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