Mike Wallace, the venerable reporter that spent nearly 40 years on the hard hitting “60 Minutes” CBS News show, has died.
CBS said in a statement released earlier today that Wallace died Saturday evening, “peacefully surrounded by family members at Waveny Care Center in New Caanan, Connecticut, where he spent the past few years.”
Wallace was both loved and feared. Highly admired for his interviewing, some say interrogating, skills, viewers loved his ability to cut to the quick. Interviewees were often said to be terrified for the same reason. His last interview before retiring was on January 20, 2008, with Roger Clemens, about Clemens’ alleged use of steroids.
Wallace was born on May 9, 1918. He graduated with a BA from the University of Michigan, and worked as a reporter for the Michigan Daily while a student at the university.
During World War II he served as a communications officer on a submarine tender. After the war he continued on into radio, and became an announcer for radio shows such as The Green Hornet and Sky King. He also spent time as a wresting announcer, game show host, and did commercials and a variety of news shows.
In 1968, Wallace became one of the original correspondents on “60 Minutes,” spending the next 37 years on the CBS program. After officially retiring in 2006, he continued on part time doing occasional specials and interviews until 2008.