By Xeni Jardin at 5:23 pm Fri, Jul 17, 2009
Walter Cronkite, the broadcast news legend who spoke the words "And now we have two Americans on the moon" 40 years ago this week died in New York today at age 92. Here is astronaut Neil Armstrong's statement on Cronkite's passing.
It’s like losing that cool old uncle.
That perfect guy who seemed to be the best of what America was supposed to be…caring, calm, fair, kind, and hard-working.
One of the few guys who you instantly enjoyed seeing and/or hearing.
Walter Cronkite was ALIVE?
Soon you’ll be telling me Abe Vigoda’s dead.
He had a series in the 80s on the 20th Century. Looking back, I only can find the series he did through the 1960s, so maybe it was reruns of that. Anyway, I was 12 or so, and really not interested in him as a media figure or politics or history. But I was really enchanted with those TV shows, and learned a lot from them. In many ways, it was my earliest political education. And now politics/history are incredibly important to me.
Of course that’s not what makes him a great man. But in addition to meaning a lot to the United States, he meant a lot to me, too. I wish I could have known him; I can’t think of another national news figure I feel that way about.
[i]And then, before he died, took a chain saw to Rush Limbaugh, Lou Dobbs, and all of the other purveyors of the cranky political swill that passes for journalism these days.[/i]
I know this is a bit off topic, but my great uncle, Edward J. Neil Jr. who won a Pulitzer Honorable Mention, would hate to have seen what has become of “news.”
This is a sad day, as a great man, Walter Cronkite, has died – a marker for the end of true news.
Roger Ebert has put up a short piece about Cronkite that summarizes well what he meant to American news.
When older important people like this dies, whether it’s your grandmother or Walter Cronkite, it closes a door. When they die, we don’t just lose them, their companionship, or their love; death places everything they felt, experienced, and understood behind a door, and disconnects us from an era. Everything that they represented moves from here into the past.
I grew up in the 60s and 70s. The world was going mad. Protests and riots were everywhere. The government was lying to us. American troops were shooting unarmed students. A lot of us didn’t really expect to see age thirty.
In all the mad, bad and crazy there was one person we could trust to tell us the truth. When “Uncle Walter” stopped doing the evening news, I stopped watching it for over a decade.
Walter Cronkite provided the narration for my childhood. I remember every major event in his voice. Thank you, sir.
#3 – it is sad, but then he was a lot less famous than Michael Jackson. Cronkite was well known in the US but virtually unknown outside it.
I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Cronkite in 1981, when I was introduced to him by his secretary, whom I was dating.
He asked what I did for work, and when I told him I was an engineer at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, that was all he needed to know: apparently, that made me “OK” in his “book.” He was down-to-earth and made easy conversation.
I got to watch him from about 20 feet away, during one his last appearances as anchor of CBS Evening News.
Rest in peace, Mr. Cronkite.
I’m remembering that I was a kid in the hospital in 1962 or 1963 and I resented it when a nurse aide came into my room to tune in a space launch with Walter Cronkite. It may have been John Glenn. I owe that lady a big apology.. After that it had to be Walter I watched for space shots. I (audio) recorded him live on the Apollo 11 moon landing.
I used to love “The 21st Century.” They were rerun on cable several years back and I have one captured in my TiVo. Cronkite envisions the home of the future where we have a TV screen for everything: “This large screen on the wall for entertainment. On your desk you’ll have screens for many purposes. This one gives you stock quotes. This one has the weather. This one connects to your work.”
Walter Cronkite has earned himself a well-deserved place in American history. We will miss him.
I swear Catie Couric’s little comment at the end made me wanna throw up. She has that effect on me on a regular basis.
thats the way it is, Ave, Walter.
It’s sad to think that this will get nowhere near the coverage that Michael Jackson did…and Cronkite was far, far more important to the world.
Usually when someone who had a long life and a momentousness career dies I say “sad but not sorry.”
But damn. If he wasn’t suffering and was of sound mind, I wish he’d have lasted five more days, and given the anchor seat for Monday’s observation of the moon landing.
And then, before he died, took a chain saw to Rush Limbaugh, Lou Dobbs, and all of the other purveyors of the cranky political swill that passes for journalism these days.
What a great life. What a fine gentleman.
He had a pair of programs I enjoyed immensely as a kid –
“The Twentieth Century”, which focused on 1900-1960, and really provided my education on world history, esp. WWI and WWII; and
“The 21st Century”, which addressed the growth of science and technology in every aspect of human endeavor, including the arts, and inspired me to do my first graphic work, using my dad’s drafting machine.
I’ll never forget him sitting and talking with Arthur C. Clarke during the lunar landings. Now, *that’s* something you don’t usually see on TV.
Godspeed, dude. Best wishes and peace of mind to all his friends and family.
I remember going to Disney World and hearing him moderate spaceship earth. I rode that thing 4 times mainly because I love the sound of his voice.
On other message boards I’m seeing people crawling out from under their rocks and badmouthing him because he supposedly “promoted Communism and helped the enemy during the Vietnam War.” Sorry folks, but you are definitely in the minority. Some few people may merit being spoken ill of after death, but Mr. Cronkite wasn’t one of them.
Listen: Walter Cronkite has come unstuck in time.
“. . . and that’s the way it is, Friday, July 17th, 2009.
For CBS News, this is Walter Cronkite.
our great masters are riding into the sunset ….Sam Maloof, Otto Heino and now Walter. The end of an era of “old school” teachers that can never be matched. Cheers and Salute for sharing their beautiful lives with us all! Peace.
Oh man… I will really miss him. Well, I already was missing him, but now I’m really sad to know that I’ll never hear that voice again. (For real I mean).
He had a long, rich life. He loved what he did. He was happily married, had a loving family, drove race cars, jumped out of airplanes, sailed a yacht, and told us how it was night after night in our living rooms where he was a constant, reassuring presence. When the astronauts stepped onto the moon, he spoke for all of us with that breathless “wow!” He was a role model for thousands of kids (myself among them) to become broadcasters, journalists, and broadcast journalists.
I am fifty-two years old. I have the same memories as everyone else. But to me, it’s more, it’s personal, and I don’t know how to say it.
I’m glad #3 was able to figure out a way to turn this into an occasion to piss on MJ’s grave. Bra-vo.
You’d think CBS‘s website would have a bit more to say.
Pity that one of CBS’s online editors found a fight on Big Brother to be a bigger/better story than the passing of one of the greatest television newsmen to ever have lived.
And Walter Cronkite said:
“One day we’ll earn our daily bread
In outer space.”
But still on Earth I thrive,
And you pretend I’m not alive
And walk by with my substitute.
I feel your pain in your comments and to all of you who knew him please accept my most sincere condolences.
The only time I ever heard him (Canadian here who doesn’t watch US news) he was pissed about the windmills noise in front of his Martha’s Vineyard estate. It was interesting to see that older man, who had no reason to hold back his any more, not caring for his opinion to go against the flow.
to those too young to know, this is why he was remarkable:
compare that to what you have today
I’ll never forget how courageously he informed us of the death of President Kennedy. I always felt he cared about us and how the news was delivered to us. He was an American hero and I will miss him.
I remember him when I was a young teen especially. He was “bad mouthing” the Vietnam war. He was obviously against it as on post-war occasions acknowledged, and did his best with his platform. Regardless of any pretense for objectivity he definitely had his opinions, most knew it but he was gramps and could influence direction. To me he hasn’t been a man of integrity necessarily, but one who had the power to speak his mind. And so it goes another influencing our history, is gone.
This is the end of the 20th century.
And so the Trojans buried Hector breaker of horses.
Where can you see some of the “The Twentieth Century” shows? I don’t remember them…Thanks
Im first inline at the Staples Center for this legend!
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