Leukemia Claims CBS News’ Ed Bradley
60 Minutes Icon Passes at 65
NEW YORK, Nov. 9, 2006—Ed Bradley, a longtime CBS News correspondent best known for his quarter-century with the newsmagazine 60 Minutes, died this morning at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City. Bradley, who was 65, succumbed to complications from leukemia.
Over the course of his distinguished career, Bradley received numerous awards, including 19 Emmys, a George Foster Peabody Award and a Lifetime Achievement honor from the National Association of Black Journalists. In 2000 he received the Radio/Television News Directors Association’s Paul White Award, whose other esteemed recipients include broadcast journalism greats Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite and Peter Jennings.
Upon news of his passing, Bradley, whose low-key manner belied a profound tenacity as a reporter, was heralded by colleagues such as Mike Wallace, Bob Schieffer and Katie Couric for his keen intelligence, consummate professionalism and top-shelf journalism skills.
Highlights of his 60 Minutes tenure include an Emmy-winning interview with condemned Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh—the only television interview McVeigh granted—as well an examination of the 1999 school shooting at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, and “The Catholic Church on Trial,” an investigation of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church. As recently as a few weeks ago, one of his latest stories, an interview with principals in the case of the alleged rape of a stripper by Duke University lacrosse players, made national headlines.
His other significant works include the 1995 documentary CBS Reports: In the Killing Fields of America, about violence in America, for which he garnered a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards grand prize. Also of note was his 1979 Emmy-winning CBS Reports story about Vietnamese boat people, which led to his position at 60 Minutes.
Prior to joining 60 Minutes in 1981, Bradley was a correspondent for CBS Reports, a position he assumed after serving as CBS News’ White House correspondent. He was also anchor of the CBS Sunday Night News and of the CBS newsmagazine Street Stories.
Bradley was born June 22, 1941, in Philadelphia, where he grew up in one of the city’s tougher sections. A graduate of Pennsylvania’s Cheney State College, where he played on the football team, he began his career in 1963 as a DJ and news reporter for the Philadelphia radio station WDAS. He moved to New York’s WCBS radio a few years later.
He joined CBS News in 1971 as a stringer in its Paris bureau. The following year he was transferred to the Saigon bureau. He became a full-fledge CBS News correspondent in 1973 while working in Southeast Asia, where he was wounded while on assignment in Cambodia. When he returned to the U.S. he was initially based in Washington. He moved to New York, where he lived for the remainder of his life, when he began working for CBS Reports.
He is survived by his wife, Patricia Blanchet.
In Ed Bradley's Own Words
Bradley was interviewed by the Television Academy Foundation’s Archive of American Television for nearly four hours (in two sessions) in New York, NY. The two-part interview was conducted by Don Carleton on May 12, 2000, and by Michael Rosen on May 8, 2001.
To view Bradley’s interviews in their entirety, please contact the Archive on the Television Academy campus, headquartered in North Hollywood, California, at (818) 754-2800.
The interviews may also be viewed online at Google® Video. Click here to watch.