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Politicians, journalists remember Cronkite

Sept. 9, 2009 at 2:32 PM   |   Comments

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NEW YORK, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- Journalists and politicians -- usually wary of each other -- joined together in New York Wednesday to pay tribute to late journalist Walter Cronkite.

Cronkite, whose direct, plainspoken style of reporting and anchoring was welcomed into millions of homes in the 1960s, '70s and '80s, died July 17 at the age of 92. His funeral was July 23, and a memorial service was held Wednesday at the Lincoln Center in New York.

"I have benefited as a citizen by his dogged pursuit of the truth," said President Barack Obama, the last speaker at the memorial.

Cronkite, Obama said, had one mission: "To make (world events) come alive for the rest of us."

Obama called Cronkite "a voice of certainty in a world that was growing more and more uncertain."

While paying tribute to the man, Obama also spoke of the journalism Cronkite practiced -- "a standard of honesty and integrity and responsibility to which so many of you have committed your careers. It's a standard that's a little bit harder to find today."

Sean McManus, president of CBS News, said the stature Cronkite held as anchor of the "CBS Evening News" "will never be duplicated," The New York Times reported.

"In so many ways, Walter was our dad," said Tom Brokaw, a former "NBC Nightly News" anchor.

Former President Bill Clinton said he thought Cronkite had the most trusted news program "because he had an inquiring mind and a caring heart and a careful devotion to the facts."

"He was always looking for the story, not the storyline," Clinton said. "And there's a big difference."

© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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