Last week was a sad week. So much wisdom and talent lost.
Bob Simon, one of the few scholar reporters, was lost in an instant to a tragic auto accident as he prepared a “60 Minutes” piece on Ebola treatment. On seeing Mandela walk free Simon once said, “He was elegant and funny and gracious and I thought maybe he can do it… Not wanting the murder the people who sent you there. That’s the measure of Nelson Mandela.”
David Carr collapsed in the New York Times newsroom after surviving addiction and cancer to become one of the wisest voices in the news. Of journalism Carr said, “Being a journalist… it’s a grand, grand caper. You get to leave, go talk to strangers, ask them anything, come back, type up their stories, edit the tape. That’s not gonna retire your loans as quickly as it should, and it’s not going to turn you into a person who’s worried about what kind of car they should buy, but that’s kind of as it should be. I mean, it beats working.”
Jon Stewart, after 17 years on The Daily Show, suddenly announced he’s signing off, taking his wise and wry wit with him. Recalling his work Stewart said, “You just have to keep trying to do good work, and hope that it leads to more good work. I want to look back on my career and be proud of the work, and be proud that I tried everything. Yes, I want to look back and know that I was terrible at a variety of things.”
Brian William, the iconic NBC news anchor, painfully plods toward his own demise until he is sentenced to six-months without pay, not nearly enough for the trust he broke. Williams once remarked, “A person starts dying when they stop dreaming.” Maybe he dreamed too much.
Indeed it was a dark week for journalism. But from these long shadows brilliant and yet unknown young journalist will arise. And they will raise those to be remembered up and into the light – and let those that need fall back into the shadows.