Charles Osgood, former host of ‘CBS Sunday Morning,’ dies at 91


Charles Osgood, the bow-tie-wearing former host of “CBS Sunday Morning” and a fixture for many years on community radio, died Tuesday at his dwelling in New Jersey, CBS Information reported. He was 91.

Osgood had been affected by dementia, in accordance with a CBS Information consultant.

Osgood was a weekend companion for thousands and thousands of viewers throughout his 22-year run as host of “CBS Sunday Morning,” the admired information journal identified for its elegantly written in-depth tales and occasional high-minded material.

Osgood took over the job from Charles Kuralt in 1994 and remained its host till October 2016, when he was effectively into his 80s. He was succeeded by Jane Pauley. The stature and recognition of “Sunday Morning” grew beneath Osgood.

Osgood was lengthy the signature voice of the CBS Radio Community. His morning newscasts and common commentary characteristic referred to as “The Osgood File” have been carried on stations throughout the nation — together with KNX in Los Angeles — from 1971 to 2017. He additionally wrote and hosted a weekend collection referred to as “Newsmark.”

Although Osgood grew to become a TV star on “CBS Sunday Morning,” he by no means left radio and at all times expressed his choice for it. His tv sign-off was, “See you on the radio,” which additionally was the title of 1 his books.

“Tv is fantastic and I don’t imply to take something away from it, however the truth is {that a} TV image may be very actually “what you see is what you get,” Osgood mentioned in a 1991 interview. “You convey your individual expertise and feelings to radio that you just don’t to tv. I do suppose that radio is extra visible. It’s a paradox however it’s true.”

On the peak of his radio profession, Osgood was reaching greater than 11 million listeners per week. His recognition as a nationwide radio information character was rivaled solely by ABC’s Paul Harvey, who died in 2009.

Osgood’s heat, avuncular supply was so distinctive, and in demand from radio advertisers, that the community allowed him to learn industrial copy, exempting him from an organization coverage that prohibited such a apply for journalists. Often, he delivered commentaries written in whimsical verse and have become often known as CBS’ poet in residence.

Osgood’s recognition on the radio facet led to TV assignments within the Nineteen Eighties. He was anchor of the “CBS Morning Information” and the Sunday version of the “CBS Night Information,” earlier than taking up for Kuralt on “CBS Sunday Morning.”

Born Charles Osgood Wooden III on Jan. 8, 1933, within the Bronx, N.Y., he grew up in Baltimore. His radio profession started when he attended Fordham College the place he labored on the faculty’s radio station. He later joined classical music radio station WGMS in Washington, D.C., the place at one time he was assigned to do a program that was piped into Dwight D. Eisenhower’s hospital room the place the president was recovering from a coronary heart assault.

Osgood’s information of classical music helped him land a job as announcer for america Military Band when he entered the army.

“I bumped into a man whereas I used to be having dinner with a buddy of mine and he was wearing a white uniform,” Osgood instructed The Instances in 1991. “He was the announcer for america Military Band. I requested him when he was getting out and he mentioned inside the subsequent few weeks, so the following morning I used to be parked out on the commanding officer’s workplace. He was impressed with the very fact I may pronounce Rimsky-Korsakov. That’s how I received the job.”

In early 1963, Osgood moved to Hartford, Conn. the place he grew to become common supervisor of WHCT-TV, an early subscription tv channel owned by RKO Common. A precursor to cable, the service used a know-how referred to as Phonevision to ship first-run motion pictures and dwell sporting occasions by telephone traces and a decoder put in within the dwelling.

Later that yr, he joined ABC Information as a author for a radio information collection referred to as “Aptitude Stories,” and lined dwell occasions for the community. He started going by Charles Osgood on the air as a result of ABC already employed an announcer named Charles Woods.

In 1967, Osgood joined CBS Radio in New York the place he was a part of the launch of the division’s all-news station, WCBS, higher often known as Newsradio 880. He joined the community 4 years later.

Osgood was a musician who performed the piano and banjo. He as soon as bought a Steinway piano from Columbia Information that had been utilized by Rudolf Serkin and Glenn Gould.

Osgood carried out on his applications and sometimes at dwell live shows with orchestras such because the Boston Pops. He’s a co-writer of “Gallant Males,” a track that grew to become an unlikely high 40 hit for Everett McKinley Dirksen, a Republican U.S. senator from Illinois, in 1967. It gained a Grammy Award for finest spoken phrase, documentary or drama recording.

Osgood authored a number of books together with “Nothing May Be Finer Than a Disaster within the Morning,” and “There’s Nothing I Wouldn’t Do If You Would Be My POSSLQ,” each collections of his radio commentaries. He carried out because the narrator in “Horton Hears a Who!,” the 2008 animated movie primarily based on the Dr. Seuss ebook.

Osgood is survived by his spouse, Jean Crafton, whom he married in 1973, and 5 kids: Kathleen, Winston, Anne Elizabeth, Emily Jean and Jamie.


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