Don Becker, 83, longtime soap opera writer, died Oct. 18 in Cocoa Beach, Fla., of cancer.

With Carl Bixby, Becker wrote the radio soap “Life Can Be Beautiful,” which ran for 17 years. It went off the air in 1953. Other soaps included “The Light of the World,” “As the Twig is Bent,” “We Love and Learn,” “The Life of Mary Sothern,” “Beyond the Valleys” and “The Man I Married.”

Becker started his career as a musician in Chicago speakeasies.

Becker also worked early on at Cincinnati radio stations WSAI and WLW, where he became assistant general manager in charge of programs. At WLW he wrote “Tea Leaves and Jade” and “Famous Jury Trials.”

He moved to New York and Hollywood to become a v.p. of Transamerican Radio Corp. In 1955 he became an exec v.p. of NBC radio and TV.

In the 1960s, he and his wife, Florence, moved to Florida, where he performed in concerts.

Survived by his son, Peter William Becker; a granddaughter, Wendy Paulette Harrell; and a sister, Pauline B. Josephson.

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