Kathy Willens/AP

Friends, Colleagues, Fans Remember Tim Russert

June 16, 2008 01:13 PM
by Cara McDonough
The “Meet the Press” host died Friday, inspiring memorial tributes on television and in his hometown. A wake will be held Tuesday, with a private funeral on Wednesday.

30-Second Summary

Russert collapsed and died of a heart attack in NBC’s Washington bureau Friday afternoon, causing a wave grief among journalists covering the story and fans mourning the loss of the man who had hosted “Meet the Press” for the past 17 years. 

When cameras opened on the set of the popular news show Sunday morning, Russert's empty chair was front and center.

The show that morning, hosted by NBC’s Tom Brokaw, was dedicated to Russert's memory and featured clips of his most memorable interviews, as well as commentary from those who knew him best, including political pundit Mary Matalin, former NBC correspondent Maria Shriver, and political consultant James Carville.

“This is a celebration, a time to remember,” Brokaw said.

Russert was remembered in the hometown he loved, as well. Hundreds of people attended a candlelight vigil Sunday night at Tim Russert Park in Buffalo, N.Y., “to honor the memory of the South Buffalo boy who never lost sight of his roots when he made it to the big time,” reported The Buffalo News.

An obituary in The Washington Post compiled many of the reactions following Russert’s death, including those of journalists at rival networks. “No one could see Tim in a room and not smile,” said ABC’s Diane Sawyer. “He brought so much joy and curiosity and sheer vitality to all our lives.”

A wake for Russert was held at St. Albans School in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m., and a private funeral and memorial service was held on Wednesday.

Headline Links: Celebrating Russert's life

Background: Russert dies at 58

Reactions: Political blogs respond

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