Reporter who broke the news of JFK's death dies - New York News

Reporter who broke the news of JFK's death dies

Posted: Updated:
Eddie Barker (left) announces President Kennedy's death. Eddie Barker (left) announces President Kennedy's death.
DALLAS -

Eddie Barker, the Channel 4 reporter who broke the new to the world that President John F. Kennedy had died, passed away Monday morning in Dallas.

In 1963 Barker was a news director and anchorman at Channel 4, then the CBS affiliate KRLD-TV.

On the day of President Kennedy's visit to Dallas, Barker was assigned to the Trade Mart where JFK's motorcade was headed for a luncheon. He instead reported the terrible news.

"We have just been told by a member of the staff at Parkland Hospital that the president is dead," he said.

CBS leaned heavily on him in the days and years that followed. Lee Harvey Oswald's window Marina gave her first interview to Barker and other exclusives followed.

His career was defined by the JFK story but didn't end there.

He started in radio as a 16-year-old in San Antonio and was still doing a radio talk show in Paris, Texas into his 80s.

"He was a godsend to my life and my career," said Norm Hitzges whose long and storied career in sports talk radio got its beginning when Barker hired him at Channel 4 in 1972.

"I learned more in the first two months under Eddie Barker than I'd learned about journalism in six years," Hitzges said. "He'd pat us on the back and then he'd yell at us. But he was great for that. We needed to get up to speed quickly and we needed somebody who knew the business. Boy did Eddie know the business."

The two remained close even after fading health put Barker in a nursing home. Hitzges saw him two weeks ago.

"I loved that man. That man was a giant in our industry," he said.

It's been said that if Walter Cronkite was the most trusted newsman in America, Barker was the most trusted in Dallas – Fort Worth.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Camilla's brother dies in New York after head injury

    Camilla's brother dies in New York after head injury

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 11:04 PM EDT2014-04-24 03:04:50 GMT
    The brother-in-law of the Prince of Wales died Wednesday after falling outside a hotel bar and suffering a head injury, police said. Mark Shand, the brother of Prince Charles' wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, was in New York for a charity auction at Sotheby's.
    The brother-in-law of the Prince of Wales died Wednesday after falling outside a hotel bar and suffering a head injury, police said. Mark Shand, the brother of Prince Charles' wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, was in New York for a charity auction at Sotheby's.
  • Deep split in Port Authority over unfinished WTC tower

    Deep split in Port Authority over unfinished WTC tower

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 9:03 PM EDT2014-04-24 01:03:40 GMT
    Board members of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey revealed a deep split Wednesday over the agency's role in effecting the completion of the long-delayed 3 World Trade Center project, with some commissioners lauding the effort and others expressing grave concerns. The discussion at the monthly board meeting offered a rare glimpse into the negotiations that have been going on behind the scenes in recent months.
    Board members of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey revealed a deep split Wednesday over the agency's role in effecting the completion of the long-delayed 3 World Trade Center project, with some commissioners lauding the effort and others expressing grave concerns. The discussion at the monthly board meeting offered a rare glimpse into the negotiations that have been going on behind the scenes in recent months.
  • God's Love We Deliver virtual bake sale for birthday cakes

    God's Love We Deliver virtual bake sale for birthday cakes

    Wednesday, April 23 2014 6:36 PM EDT2014-04-23 22:36:46 GMT
    God's Love We Deliver provides meals to people in the New York City area who are too sick to shop and cook for themselves. Clients also receive birthday cards that are decorated by local school students. Sometimes a cake is the only birthday gift that God's Love's clients will receive.
    God's Love We Deliver provides meals to people in the New York City area who are too sick to shop and cook for themselves. Clients also receive birthday cards that are decorated by local school students. Sometimes a cake is the only birthday gift that God's Love's clients will receive.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices