RIP "Big Russ"

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Bfgrn, Sep 26, 2009.

  1. Bfgrn

    Bfgrn Gold Member

    Apr 4, 2009
    Thanks Received:
    Trophy Points:

    Timothy J. Russert, 'Big Russ,' dies at 85

    Updated: September 25, 2009, 4:14 PM


    Timothy J. Russert Sr., father of the late "Meet the Press" moderator Tim Russert, has died at age 85, CNN reported Thursday.

    Known as "Big Russ," the elder Russert became famous in his own right after being the subject of a best-selling book by Tim, who died of a heart attack at 58 in June 2008.

    In a statement released Thursday, the Russert family asked for privacy.

    "It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Timothy Joseph Russert," it read.

    "While he was affectionately known to the world as "Big Russ,' he carried no more important nor meaningful titles than those of father, grandfather, great-grandfather, patriot and friend. He passed peacefully with his family at his side from natural causes at the age of 85," the statement continued.

    "Big Russ & Me: Father and Son -- Lessons of Life" was published in 2004 and chronicled the life of the man who Tim Russert said steered him through life with his scrappy South Buffalo wisdom and salt-of-the-earth Irish Catholic values.

    "Big Russ" had learned that his son died of a heart attack two days before Father's Day in June 2008.

    In a June 16, 2004, appearance with his father on NBC's "Today Show," Tim Russert recalled some of the lessons he learned from the senior Russert.

    "He used to say: "Put your nose to the grindstone and hope for the best,' " Tim Russert told "Today Show" host Matt Lauer.

    Tim Russert also described his father as an eternal optimist.

    Friends of the younger Russert noted at the time that father and son were very close, according to a June 15, 2008, Buffalo News article following Tim Russert's death.

    Don Huber, a family friend, said at the time that "Big Russ" never missed "Meet the Press" on Sunday mornings. A few years back, while his father was hospitalized, Tim Russert ended the program by announcing that he was sending him a gift that afternoon. "Big Russ" didn't know what the gift would be. Then, Russert "walked in the door. . . . What it was, was him," Huber recalled.

    "No matter what, they called each other every day on the phone," recalled another friend, Raymond E. McGirr, a member of American Legion Post 721 and the Blackthorn Club, a social club for Irish-American men.

    Timothy J. Russert, 'Big Russ,' dies at 85 : Home: The Buffalo News

Share This Page