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60 Minutes' Mike Wallace dies at 93

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
April 9th, 2012
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

"I've often replied, when asked, 'I'll retire when my toes turn up,'" 60 Minutes' fiercely tenacious newsman Mike Wallace once declared. "Well, they're just beginning to curl a little, which means that as I approach my 88th birthday, it's become apparent to me that my eyes and ears, among other appurtenances, aren't quite what they used to be." Wallace lived on another five years, surviving triple bypass heart surgery in 2008. He has passed on at the age of 93.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Mike Wallace spent four decades as a hard-hitting news correspondent. He died Saturday night "peacefully surrounded by family members at Waveny Care Center in New Caanan, Connecticut, where he spent the past few years," CBS said in a statement.

Wallace was already a veteran of the "CBS Morning News with Mike Wallace" and had covered most of the 1960s' major news stories, including several assignments to Vietnam, when he took on the role of correspondent for the new television show "60 Minutes."

Debuting in September 1968, Wallace's four-decade career on "60 Minutes," "sealed his reputation as a hard-charging, no-holds-barred interviewer," according to the Knight-Wallace Foundation at the University of Michigan, which Wallace supported.

"His most memorable moments at '60 Minutes' have often been news-making events in their own rights.

"There were very few 20th century icons who didn't submit to a Mike Wallace interview," CBS said. "He lectured Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, on corruption. He lectured Yasser Arafat on violence. He asked the Ayatollah Khomeini if he were crazy."

Wallace "loved villains because they made such great copy," he had a unique ability to get them to open up to him.

In 2006, Wallace became a correspondent emeritus for "60 Minutes" and stopped appearing regularly.

Wallace reminded his viewers that "CBS is not pushing me. I'll be in a comfortable office on the same floor -- just around the corner from where I've holed up for the past 43 years -- available, when asked, for whatever chore CBS News, '60 Minutes,' the 'CBS Evening News,' have in mind for me."

"60 Minutes" will dedicate a special program to Wallace on April 15, CBS said.

Wallace is survived by his wife, Mary; son Chris, host of "Fox News Sunday"; a stepdaughter, Pauline Dora; two stepsons, Eames and Angus Yates; seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren, CBS said.

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