NBC News' Tim Russert has died of a heart attack. He was 58.
He was working in NBC's Washington bureau today when he collapsed while recording voice overs.
DC Fire tells us the call came in at 1:41 PM ET. We're told they transported one adult male patient in cardiac arrest to Sibley Hospital where he died.
The "Meet the Press" host and author is survived by his wife Maureen Orth -- a special correspondent for Vanity Fair -- and their adult son, Luke.
Tim Russert, NBC journalist and political heavyweight host of "Meet the Press," has died after collapsing at NBC's Washington news bureau, a source said. He was 58 years old.
Russert, who rose from the inside world of politics where he was former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo's press secretary and one-time chief of staff to the late Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, was able to successfully cross over to political journalism and rise to become one of its leading lights.
In his role as host of the seminal Sunday morning political program "Meet the Press" - which he took over in 1991 - he became renowned for his hard-nosed interviews where he frequently cornered some of Washington's cagiest political figures with tough questions.
Russert joined NBC News in 1984. In April 1985, he supervised the live broadcasts of the Today program from Rome, negotiating and arranging an appearance by Pope John Paul II - a first for American television. In 1986 and 1987 Russert led NBC News weeklong broadcasts from South America, Australia and China.
In 2008, Time Magazine named him one of the world's 100 most influential people.
Tim Russert Is Dead at 58, His Family Says
Tom Brokaw, the former anchor of NBC Nightly News, came on the air at 3:39 p.m. that Mr. Russert had collapsed and died early this afternoon while at work. He had just returned from Italy with his family.
“Our beloved colleague,” a grave Mr. Brokaw called him, one of the premier journalists of our time. He said this was one of the most important years in his life, with his deep engagement in the network’s political coverage, and that he “worked to the point of exhaustion.” Mr. Brokaw said Mr. Russert was a true child of Buffalo and always stayed in touch with his blue collar roots and “the ethos of that community.”
He said Mr. Russert had just moved his father, who is in his late 80s, from one facility to another in Bufflo. He said he loved his family, his Catholic faith, his country, politics, the Buffalo Bills, the New York Yankees and the Washington national. “This news division will not be the same without his strong, clear voice,” Mr. Brokaw said.
After Mr. Brokaw made the announcement, the network switched to Brian Williams, the anchor of the NBC News, who broke down as he tried to describe what the loss meant to his network family.
Early reports state that Russert died of a heart attack while recording a production track in Washington, D.C. on June 13, 2008, a day after returning from Italy. The New York Times reports that Tim Russert died on Friday June 13th 2008 of a heart attack.
He collapsed and died at work, according to the network.
MSNBC (with a brief biography):
Tim Russert, NBC News’ Washington bureau chief and the moderator of “Meet the Press,” died Friday after a sudden heart attack at the bureau, NBC News said Friday. He was 58. No further details were immediately available.
he collapsed at work, doing what he loved so much.
Brokaw stated a few moments ago that they wanted to notify his immediate family (they're still in Italy) and relatives in Buffalo, New York about his death before covering it on MSNBC and MSNBC's website.
the bushes are issuing a written statement shortly.
People.com just did an article... http://www.people.com/people/article/0,,20206716,00.html
It's got a brief bio and different quotes
wallof_illusion & winniecooper & WhiteHouse.Gov with President Bush's statement:
Laura and I are deeply saddened by the sudden passing of Tim Russert. Those of us who knew and worked with Tim, his many friends, and the millions of Americans who loyally followed his career on the air will all miss him.
As the longest-serving host of the longest-running program in the history of television, he was an institution in both news and politics for more than two decades. Tim was a tough and hardworking newsman. He was always well-informed and thorough in his interviews. And he was as gregarious off the set as he was prepared on it.
Most important, Tim was a proud son and father, and Laura and I offer our deepest sympathies to his wife Maureen, his son Luke, and the entire Russert family. We will keep them in our prayers.
huffington post has up a youtube of tom brokaw's initial announcement: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/06/13/tim-russert-dies-of-heart_n_107032.html
herbatka with a statement from Barack Obama:
I've known Tim since speaking at Convention in 2004. He's someone who overtime I came to consider not only a journalist but a friend. There wasn't a better interviewer in television. Not a more thoughtful analyst of our politics and he was also one of the finest men I knew. Somebody who cared about America, cared about the issues, cared about family. I am grief stricken with the loss and my thoughts and prayers go out to his family and I hope his family well and I hope that even though Tim is irreplacable, that the standard that he set in his professional life and in his family life are standards that we carry with us in our own lives.
winniecooper & ford with a statement from John McCain:
I am very saddened by Tim Russert's sudden death. Cindy and I extend our thoughts and prayers to the Russert family as they cope with this shocking loss and remember the life and legacy of a loving father, husband and the preeminent political journalist of his generation. He was truly a great American who loved his family, his friends, his Buffalo Bills, and everything about politics and America. He was just a terrific guy. I was proud to call him a friend, and in the coming days, we will pay tribute to a life whose contributions to us all will long endure.
They are updating with various statements--Al Gore, Joe Lieberman, and more.
MSNBC & Keith Olbermann & _____faith:
The Buffalo mayor (Mayor Brian W. Brown) just requested for all flags on city property to be lowered to half-staff.
Cause of death yet to be determined.
Gawker has a video compilation of some of his best moments: http://gawker.com/tag/obit/?i=5016336&t=tim-russert-1950+2008
Here's a link to CBS news which has a statement from just about every big name in politics regarding Tim's passing. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2008/06/13/politics/main4180701.shtml?source=related_story
They're having a candlelight vigil tomorrow at Tim Russert Park in Buffalo [at 9 PM].
Dr. Michael Newman - Tim's Physician - Discussed Tim's coronary artery disease, a fresh clot in his coronary artery, he had enlarged heart (according to the autopsy?). He also discussed a stress test he just had on April 29...and passed.
In a statement detailing autopsy results, Dr. Michael Newman said his famous patient had passed a stress test on April 29 and had even worked out on a treadmill the morning of his death.
"Russert, age 58, was known to have asymptomatic coronary artery disease (atherosclerosis), which resulted in hardening of his coronary arteries," Newman said. "The autopsy revealed an enlarged heart and significant atherosclerosis of the left anterior descending coronary artery with (a) fresh clot which caused a heart attack resulting in a fatal ventricular arrhythmia."
Russert's stress test on April 29 was "normal," Newman said. "At a high level of exercise he had no symptoms," Newman said, adding that his blood pressure and cholesterol were "well-controlled."
"We walked out of the taping around 10:15 and Gerry said, 'You know, I don't think Tim felt very well,' " Harwood tells PEOPLE. "I knew he was tired because he had flown in from Rome the night before, but I didn't think much of it."
Wecht said only one thing does not make sense to him – Newman's claim that Russert passed the stress test on April 29 and that he could have passed one an hour before his death. "This hardening of the arteries is something that builds up over a period of years," said Wecht. "So he wouldn't be able to continue the stress test. He'd get short of breath."
MSNBC LIVE FEED COVERAGE - CLICK HERE TO WATCH
An impromptu Tim Russert memorial....with his "famous electronic whiteboad"...'Florida, Florida, Florida'.