Legendary Anchor Jim Lehrer Dead At 85

REUTERS/Chip Somodevilla/Pool/File Photo

Katie Jerkovich Entertainment Reporter
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Legendary PBS newsman and anchor Jim Lehrer died in his sleep on Thursday at the age of 85, the organization shared following his death.

“With heavy hearts we report the death of PBS NewsHour co-founder Jim Lehrer at age 85,” a tweet read from PBSNewsHour, along with a photo of the longtime anchor hard at work. The post was noted by Fox News. (RELATED: Legendary Comic Don Rickles Died At Age 90)

Moderator Jim Lehrer waves prior to the first U.S. Presidential Debate in Oxford, Mississippi, September 26, 2008. REUTERS/Jim Bourg


“A giant in journalism, his tenacity and dedication to simply delivering the news remain the core of our work,” the statement went on. (RELATED: Hollywood Reacts To Death Of Legendary Actress Doris Day)

Leher, who made a name for himself when he was covering the 1973 Senate Watergate hearings, started the NewsHour with another giant in journalism, Robert MacNeil in 1975. Jim retired from the organization’s flagship news program in 2011, after 36 years after anchoring the show.

During his career, he also moderated 12 presidential debates, more than any other person in U.S. History. He has also received numerous accolades for his work, including being inducted into the Television Hall of Fame in 1999.

Shortly after news broke about his death, journalist and friends reacted with tributes to the anchor on social media.

“In this age of bitterly partisan journalism, Jim Lehrer was an exemplar of fair, measured, objective reporting. He will be missed,” Katie Couric tweeted.

“Tonight we spend most of the ⁦@NewsHour⁩ remembering and paying tribute to our co-founder, a giant of American journalism and beloved friend to so many, Jim Lehrer,” Judy Woodruff wrote.

He is survived by his wife Kate, daughters Jamie, Lucy and Amanda, and six grandchildren.