Bob Edwards, who spent decades as host of NPR’s “Morning Edition,” has died, according to the public radio network. He was 76.
In a statement released Monday, NPR CEO John Lansing confirmed Edwards’ passing.
“Bob Edwards understood the intimate and distinctly personal connection with audiences that distinguishes audio journalism from other mediums, and for decades he was a trusted voice in the lives of millions of public radio listeners,” he said. “Staff at NPR and all across the Network, along with those millions of listeners, will remember Bob Edwards with gratitude.”
Edwards died peacefully Saturday with his family around him, according to a statement obtained by the news network.
“The world of broadcasting has lost a behemoth,” said his wife, Windsor Johnston. “Bob was an absolute master at his skill and left an indelible mark on the field of journalism.”
She added, “He helped (pave) the way for the younger generation of journalists who continue to make NPR what it is today.”
Edwards began his tenure with NPR as a newscaster in 1974. Later that year, he joined Susan Stamberg as co-host of “All Things Considered,” and he went on to help in launching “Morning Edition” in 1979.
Stamberg told NPR on Monday that it took time for the two of them to find their rhythm with one another, describing his as “Mr. Cool .. Mr. Authoritative” while she “was the New Yorker with a million ideas and a big laugh.” She remembered his humor and the impact that he had on millions of Americans.
“He was Bob Edwards of Morning Edition for 24 1/2 years, and his was the voice we woke up to,” she said.
During his time with NPR, his voice was heard by more than 13 million listeners each week.
Born in Louisville, Kentucky, Edwards began his radio career at a small station in New Albany, Indiana. He served as a broadcaster in the U.S. Army before moving to Washington, D.C., where he became an anchorman for WTOP-AM.
After leaving NPR, Edwards launched “The Bob Edwards Show” on XM Satellite Radio. The program ran from 2004 until 2014, according to Politico.
Edwards also wrote two books: “Fridays with Red: A Radio Friendship,” focused on his conversations with veteran sportscaster Red Barber, who passed in 1992, and “Edward R. Murrow and the Birth of Broadcast Journalism.”
He was inducted into the national Radio Hall of Fame in 2004.
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