Radio News Legend Rides Off Into Retirement After 35 Years at CBS
"Oh, Charlie, I’m flabbergasted. What can I say. It’s really nice. Time on the Roundup now is eight minutes past the hour."
And those were the final words most people heard from the smooth-as-silk bass of Christopher Glenn as anchor of the "World News Roundup" on CBS News Radio (the broadcast runs 10 minutes, but most stations in major markets cut out at eight past to do traffic. Shame they couldn't make an exception on this day).
Charlie would be Charles Osgood, who voiced a lyrical two-minute tribute to Glenn on the Roundup, which you can hear at http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/02/22/entertainment/main1337111.shtml, along with Glenn's riveting account of the shuttle Challenger explosion 20 years ago.
"His CBS colleagues not only admired and respected him," said Osgood, "they wanted to sound like him."
Indeed. Often imitated, but never duplicated. And you could hurt your larynx trying.
As Glenn did the final time check of his 35-year career at CBS, it sounded like he got a little choked up, which is understandable given the circumstances, but especially worthy of mention as it may have been the first time he got that emotional in a half-century of broadcasting.
Glenn may be signing off, but for the diminishing few who still aspire to a career in radio news, his checkered career at the mic and behind the scenes as an award-winning writer and producer should be studied intently.
It's quite a legacy and for those who worked with him over the years like myself, it was one that was a privilege to be a part of.