I am shocked and deeply saddened about the tragic and sudden passing of Tim Russert, NBC News Washington Bureau Chief, host of the extremely popular Sunday morning show "Meet the Press", and frequent guest on MSNBC and the "Today Show". He collapsed and died from a massive heart attack (proven by autopsy) while on the set of NBC News this afternoon, despite the best efforts of the paramedics to revive him.
I feel like I know Tim Russert personally. I have taped and watched "Meet the Press" every Sunday for the past few years, and watched it online when it wasn't taped. I thoroughly enjoyed his interviewing style, holding his guests responsible for the comments they had often made in the past, which often contradicted their current stances. He was very fair and nonpartisan. He grilled conservatives, liberals, republicans and democrats with equal vigor. He was so enthusiastic in his coverage of politics. His face was akin to a bulldog, but he appeared to have the most charming and warm personality. He was keenly intelligent, but also knew how to smile and laugh with his guests. From the testimonials that are pouring all over the internet and television right now, he was beloved by all that new him. He was always repectful, kind and caring. Before and after the cameras were taping, he would ask the guests about their personal lives and he would ask about their family.
Tim Russert was only 58 years old. It is ironic that he has died on Father's Day weekend, as he is also famous for writing stories about fathers, in his book "Big Russ and Me". I don't know what to say. He was the man, the stalwart and Godfather of political coverage.
Tim Russert was also a frequent guest on the Imus in the Morning show. Here is a funny compilation clip of Tim actually sitting in the studio and ripping on Imus from the mid-1990s.
I will miss Tim Russert greatly. The United States of America will miss Tim Russert tremendously.