R.I.P. PETER JENNINGS
One of Ottawa's most famous native citizens has died of lung cancer.
From ABC News:
" ABC News Anchor Peter Jennings died today at his home in New York City. He was 67. On April 5, Jennings announced he had been diagnosed with lung cancer.
He is survived by his wife, Kayce Freed, his two children, Elizabeth, 25, and Christopher, 23, and his sister, Sarah Jennings.
"Peter died with his family around him, without pain and in peace. He knew he'd lived a good life," his wife and children said in a statement.
In announcing Jennings' death to his ABC colleagues, News President David Westin wrote:
"For four decades, Peter has been our colleague, our friend, and our leader in so many ways. None of us will be the same without him.
"As you all know, Peter learned only this spring that the health problem he'd been struggling with was lung cancer. With Kayce, he moved straight into an aggressive chemotherapy treatment. He knew that it was an uphill struggle. But he faced it with realism, courage, and a firm hope that he would be one of the fortunate ones. In the end, he was not.
"We will have many opportunities in the coming hours and days to remember Peter for all that he meant to us all. It cannot be overstated or captured in words alone. But for the moment, the finest tribute we can give is to continue to do the work he loved so much and inspired us to do."
I do have a particular attachment to Peter Jennings that I didn't have with Tom Brokaw or Dan Rather, not just because he was a Canadian, but also because ABC World News Tonight was the only one of the big three American nightly newscasts I could watch on my Casio TV riding on the AMT communter train back home to Pincourt (from WVNY-22, the ABC affiliate in Burlington VT). I watched the American evening news sometimes up through my mid-twenties, but, after September 11th, I tried to watch the American news every night, and ABC World News Tonight was my newscast of choice.
I don't want to be a know-it-all, but, while very sad and very premature, I can't say I wasn't expecting his death, considering that, when he announced that he was suffering from lung cancer in April, he was still supposed to appear in regular segments to document his living with cancer and he was still hoping to be the anchorman on those days when he was able to speak normally, yet I don't think he had actually appeared on television since the initial announcement.
Also, it's rather telling that ABC News already had the death reel prepared.
Regardless, he will be missed.