The most trusted man in America since the 1960s and the father of television news, Walter Cronkite died on July 17, at the age of 92.
During my university years in the US from 1957 to late 1960s, Huntley-Brinkley News was the source of stories on the major events from around the world. Chet Huntley from New York and David Brinkley from WDC presented the news with a conviction that what they said was the truth.
Then in 1962, a new face appeared on the CBS which lasted for almost two decades when he had to retire at the age of 65 in 1981. During those years, Walter Cronkite presented the half-hour “CBS Evening News” from 7:00 to 7:30 PM every weekday.
He told the stories of the assassination of President Kennedy in 1963 and Rev. Martin Luther King and President Johnson commented that “If I lost Walter, I have lost Middle America” following his trip to Vietnam and statement that America could not win the war.
He made similar comments on the Iraq war and was conscious of their impact on America.
During his tenure at CBS, Walter Cronkite narrated a documentary on “Ataturk”, probably the best ever made on the greatest leader of the 20th century.
Walter Cronkite visited Turkey and most likely Ataturk’s Mausoleum to pay his respects to the man he admired so much.
Walter Cronkite was more than just an anchor. There are many good anchors today, including several on Turkish TV also, but no one has duplicated Walter Cronkite’s style who set the gold standard for journalism.
Everyone who knew him, from President Obama to his colleagues from the media and many ordinary Americans praised one of the icons of America who will always be remembered in Turkey with his narration of the documentary on Ataturk.
19 July 2009