Walter Cronkite

It’s funny, what we remember, and what we don’t.

My family will throw names around left and right of people who were in our lives.  And I have no idea who they are talking about.  Neighbors, school mates, friends of the family.  I just can’t recall most of who they mention.

I’ll be listening to stories about things we did.  Or things we experienced as a family or as kids in our neighborhood.  No bells ringing in recognition of those either.

I do remember some things, random things.  Things that others don’t recall at all.

What I find most interesting though, is that I think often of Walter Cronkite.

I remember watching Walter Cronkite on the CBS News.  Maybe because he was a constant staple for the first seventeen years of my life.  He was there through every thing.  Even if I didn’t understand what he was talking about, he was there explaining it.  I remember his voice and feeling lulled by it.   I don’t necessarily want to say ‘comforted’ because I probably didn’t understand half of what he was talking about.  But I felt safe in a different way.

I could almost bet that he is who my parents were watching when they watched the news of the assassination of John F. Kennedy as they held me, just a newborn.  I might know the other news casters of that time if they would be named to me.  Or they might go the way of the names my family throw around and I can’t recall.  But his is the name I think of when I think of news.  Back when news wasn’t for entertainment or ‘show’.  But for us to be provided with information and facts.  We knew when he told us “and that’s the way it is”, that that’s the way it was.  I think that’s the safety I felt.  The trust.

I’ve thought of Mr. Cronkite an awful lot these past few years.

I miss him.