WASHINGTON Veteran reporter and commentator Daniel Schorr, whose hard-hitting reporting for CBS got him on President Richard Nixons notorious enemies list in the 1970s, has died. He was 93.
Schorr died Friday at Washingtons Georgetown University Hospital after a brief illness, said his son, Jonathan Schorr.
Daniel Schorrs career of more than six decades spanned the spectrum of journalism beginning in print, then moving to television where he spent 23 years with CBS News and ending with National Public Radio, where he worked until he died. He also wrote several books, including his memoir, Staying Tuned: A Life in Journalism.
The famed political reporter nearly became a music reviewer instead. Beyond the dogged reporting, though, Jonathan Schorr, 42, said his father was warm, caring and someone who taught by example.
Were incredibly sad, but at the same time, my dad had 93 amazing years, he said. I think all he could have wished for is a terrific, long life, where he accomplished amazing things and died peacefully in the arms of his entire family.
Schorr reported from Moscow; Havana; Bonn, Germany; and many other cities as a foreign correspondent. While at CBS, he brought Americans the first-ever exclusive television interview with a Soviet leader, Nikita Khrushchev, in 1957.
During the Nixon years, Schorr not only covered the news as CBS chief Watergate correspondent, but he also became part of the story. Hoping to beat the competition, he rushed to the air with Nixons famous enemies list and began reading the list of 20 to viewers before previewing it. As he got to No. 17, he discovered his name.
Recently, well into his 90s, he was still giving commentaries on NPR. He was last heard on the air waves July 10, on NPRs Weekend Edition with Scott Simon in a discussion of the U.S.-Russia spy swap, the Justice Departments lawsuit against Arizona and other news of the week.
Simon called working with Schorr one of the great blessings of my life.
He had no boss but the First Amendment, Simon said. He felt his duty was to the news.
Schorr spoke in a thick New York accent he never lost, a voice that contrasted sharply with the drama-school quality of many newscasters of the 1950s and 60s. It made his delivery all the more compelling.