Famed journalist and interviewer Mike Wallace passed away Saturday night at the age of 93 at a care facility in New Haven, Connecticut. He had been an anchor of CBS’ “60 Minutes” for forty years before he announced his retirement as a regular correspondent in March 2006.
Leslie Moonves, president and CEO of CBS Corporation, announced the news of his death Sunday. "It is with tremendous sadness that we mark the passing of Mike Wallace. His extraordinary contribution as a broadcaster is immeasurable and he has been a force within the television industry throughout its existence. His loss will be felt by all of us at CBS," said Moonves, according to a report on CBS News website.
A heart surgery slowed him down by the time he celebrated his 90th birthday in 2008, otherwise Mike Wallace had won the praise and appreciation of his friends and colleagues as long as he appeared on "60 Minutes”. He interviewed famous men such asand Roger Clemens and his famous exchange was with Malcolm X.
Friends and colleagues were grief-stricken when they heard that Mike Wallace had passed away. They paid tribute to the veteran journalist on Sunday.
According to the Huffington Post, CBS News chairman and "60 Minutes" executive producer Jeff Fager said about the legendary newsman, "He loved being Mike Wallace. He loved the fact that if he showed up for an interview, it made people nervous. ... He knew, and he knew that everybody else knew, that he was going to get to the truth. And that's what motivated him."
"Mike was a great friend and a mentor to me. He even gave me a compliment once, and he was one of the real pioneers in television journalism,” said “Face the Nation" host Bob Schieffer.
Former "CBS Evening News" anchorremembered Mike Wallace in the following words: "Mike Wallace was from the beginning and for many years, the heart and soul of `60 Minutes.' In that role he helped change American television news.”
“Among the ways that this change was for the better: TV news became more investigative, more aggressive and relevant. Mike was sharp and quick of mind, a fierce competitor and a master interviewer," he added.
Mike Wallace, whose career spanned 60 years, was born on May 9, 1918, in Brookline, Massachusetts. He will forever be remembered as a vivacious interviewer and charming announcer.