Events Leading Up to My Death: The Life of a Twentieth Century Reporter

Howard K. Smith, Author
Howard K. Smith, Author St. Martin's Press $24.95 (417p) ISBN 978-0-312-13970-4
Reviewed on: 03/04/1996
Release date: 03/01/1996
Paperback - 400 pages - 978-0-312-15525-4
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Upon graduation from Tulane, Smith (born in Louisiana in 1914) began working as a reporter on the New Orleans Item. He soon won a Rhodes Scholarship and found himself at Oxford on the eve of WW II. In this exciting autobiography, Smith, known to millions as an urbane and astute network anchorman, tells his story through the great historical events of the century. At the outbreak of the war, he left Oxford to work for the United Press's Berlin office. He relates the arrogance of the Nazis and how they refused to let him broadcast for his new employer, CBS Radio, and kept him from leaving the country. The Nazis finally relented and, on December 6, 1941, he went to Switzerland. Smith tells wonderful stories about covering the Allied race across Europe; being CBS's voice in Berlin after the war; reporting on the Nuremburg trials; his relationship with Edward R. Murrow; and his easy transition to TV. He goes on to describe leaving CBS (over civil rights reporting) and working at ABC, covering JFK and LBJ and his run-ins with Richard Nixon (""President Jekyll""). Smith's humanity, warmth and humor shine through in this superb memoir. Photos not seen by PW. (Mar.)
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