CBS newsman Morley Safer dead at age 84, retired days ago

Thu May 19, 2016 1:25pm EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Bill Trott

(Reuters) - Television journalist Morley Safer, who made his reputation as a Vietnam War correspondent for CBS and then became a mainstay on the network's "60 Minutes" show for 46 years, died at age 84 on Thursday, a few days after his retirement, the network announced.

Safer, who retired in what CBS described as declining health, died at his home in Manhattan.

"60 Minutes" had paid tribute to his work on Sunday's show. In a final posting on Twitter on Sunday Safer wrote, "It’s been a wonderful run, and I want to thank the millions of people who have been loyal to our @60Minutes broadcast. Thank you!"

Safer, who spent 61 years in television news, brought an authoritative, urbane style to "60 Minutes," CBS's ground-breaking news program, and his work was a mix of hard and soft news. The part-time painter often reported on art and his disdain for contemporary works often set the art world atwitter.

CBS said Safer changed war reporting forever with his work in Vietnam before becoming an "iconic" correspondent who was one of U.S. television's most enduring stars.

"Morley was one of the most important journalists in any medium, ever," CBS chairman and Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves said in a statement.

"He was also a gentleman, a scholar, a great raconteur - all of those things and much more to generations of colleagues, his legion of friends, and his family."

Although he interviewed many artists, actors and musicians, Safer never cared much for celebrities, saying, "I really don't care what movie stars have to say about life." Still, he listed country singer Dolly Parton among his favorite interview subjects.   Continued...

'60 Minutes' journalist Morley Safer attends the world premiere of new HBO series VEEP in New York City, April 10, 2012.  REUTERS/Stephen Chernin/Files