Garrick Utley: Former NBC TV Correspondent Dies at 74


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One of the most legendary broadcast news correspondents has passed away from prostate cancer.

Garrick Utley was 74-years-old when he died in his New York home Thursday night.  He's been battling the illness for two years.

In a very extensive interview, Utley's wife Gertje, 40, described to CNN News some of his most memorable moments as a traditional journalist.

"He was really the old kind of journalist. He was the old kind of trenchcoat-clad journalist who wrote his own copy -- always wrote his own copy,” she recalled of her husband.

Utley's life entails many accomplishments within the Broadcast Journalism field.

In 1963, he started his career with NBC News as an office assistant. After just a year, the Huntley-Brinkley Report promoted Utley as a journalist in London.

He then went on to become a renowned TV correspondent for the next three decades.

Utley was mostly recognized for his overseas work.

“They were heady days for foreign correspondents. It was not unusual for NBC to send Utley for three weeks to report a story in China or for two weeks to cover a story in Zimbabwe. It was still the journalism where you actually had to have the knowledge and explain a situation,” his wife said.

Utley became a trailblazer for NBC's news coverage during the Vietnam War. From 1966 to 1979, he was involved in multiple foreign jobs in Berlin, Paris, and Britain.

The multilingual TV pioneer reported in over 70 countries and for numerous capitals around the world.

In 1993, Utley left NBC News for a chief foreign correspondent position with ABC News, but it wasn't on a positive note. He once told the Associated Press in an interview how his years of substantial work at the station might have been taken for granted.

“I may have been the only person at NBC News who did every type of programming as host or anchor,” he said. “There's a risk in being the utility infielder.”

He ended his TV career with CNN from 1997 to the early 2000s, where he is also remembered for anchoring the events of 9/11.

CNN reported how Utley's career also encompassed many other achievements such as: serving on the board for Carlton College and Public Radio International and being the recipient of an Edward R. Murrow Award.

In memory of Utley, Editorial Director Richard T. Griffiths of CNN sent out a mass email Friday detailing how he “was the consummate gentleman in every encounter. He was relentlessly curious, passionate about storytelling, and unafraid to take on the controversial topics...He left a mark. We can all hope to do the same.”

Here is a segment done by TODAY:

Image via Wikimedia Commons