NBC's Tim Russert dies

Tim Russert
Tim Russert

WASHINGTON (KHNL) - He was a moderator on Meet the Press and force not to be reckoned with when it came to interviewing major politicians.

The Washington Bureau Chief of NBC News, Tim Russert died suddenly Friday at the age of 58.

He was considered one of the toughest questioners of all time. But Russert's passion for politics was unmatched.

Tim Russert loved his job.

And when his face got that fierce expression and his questions got tough, no Sunday political show host did it better.

"How do you respond to critics who say you brought the nation to war under false pretenses?" Russert asked President Bush.

"Yes, uh, the uh, first of all I expected to find the weapons," said President Bush.

In this year's presidential primary debates, Russert played a major role.

"Senator McCain, is it a problem with your campaign that the economy is now the most important issue?"

"Senator Obama let me ask you about motivating, firing, keeping your word."

"He was the standard bearer for serious journalism and he also happened to be a great guy," said Obama Barrack.

"Tim russert was the top of his profession," said Senator John McCain  "He, honesty and integrity."

When Bush White House insider Scooter Libby claimed Russert leaked the identity of CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson to him, Russert went to the grand jury to deny it and Libby went to jail.

Tim Russert was a working class catholic guy from Buffalo.

He so respected his dad, Big Russ, he wrote a book about him that became a best seller.

Russert went to law school and to Capitol Hill then to NBC when his simple white board made him a bigger star in the crazy 2000 presidential election.

Russert's passing Friday was announced by Tom Brokaw, another friend and admirer.

"Our beloved colleague, one of the premier journalists of our time - Tim Russert - died this afternoon after collapsing at work at the NBC News Bureau. N Washington, D.C.

Tim Russert gone at age 58.

Meet the Press will air at a special time this Sunday morning at 5 a.m. and rebroadcast at 7 p.m. right here on NBC.