Walter Cronkite died on July 17th, 2009. He was one of America’s best-known and most respected news reporters. The CBS (Columbia Broadcasting System) site tells us he was once voted “the most trusted man in America”. He is certainly a part of the country’s history.
Cronkite was born in St. Joseph, Missouri, in 1916. Later, his family moved to Texas. He went to the University of Texas, but left to work as a newspaper reporter. Later, he worked as a radio reporter. In 1950, he went to work at CBS. TV was still very new.
Cronkite reported World War II battles, the Vietnam War, President Kennedy’s assassination, and many other events. He is probably best remembered for two things: reporting on the space program in the 1960s, and being anchorman (host) of the CBS evening news from 1962 to 1981.
Charles Bolden, NASA Administrator, says, “From the earliest days of the space program, Walter brought the excitement, the drama, and the achievements of space flight directly into our homes.” Bolden said it was Cronkite’s reporting that inspired him to go to work for the space program.
Many people remember watching Cronkite on the news every night as they were growing up. He didn’t only announce the news, he also edited it. He always ended the show with the words, “And that’s the way it is . . .” Then he would say the date, his name, “CBS News”, and “good night”.”
After Cronkite retired, he served on CBS’ board of directors. He still helped the company with special programs.
Cronkite was also interested in ships and boats. He enjoyed sailing and was a member of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary (a group of volunteers who help the Coast Guard).
He died at home, with his family, at the age of 92.
To read more about Walter Cronkite, and see video clips from his career, visit the CBS site.