CNN’s legendary former anchor Bernard Shaw is dead at 82

Shaw was adulated for his impeccable delivery of the news and coverage of major national events
Bernard Shaw (Image source: YouTube/CNN)

Bernard Shaw, the adulated arbiter of news and an original CNN anchor who began with the network when it launched in 1980, has died. He was 82.

Shaw’s family said in a statement on Thursday, Sept. 8, 2022, that the universally-admired Shaw passed away after battling a non-COVID-related case of pneumonia.

Shaw achieved national renown for his measured, smooth and unbiased delivery of current events around the world up until the time he retired from the network following the 2000 presidential debates and election that George W. Bush won over former Vice President Al Gore. Following his final airing, the man who also covered the Tiananmen Square revolt in May 1989 and the First Gulf war from Baghdad in 1991 received a standing ovation from the CNN newsroom. 

“He was our lead anchor for the next twenty years from anchoring coverage of presidential elections to his iconic coverage of the First Gulf War live from Baghdad in 1991,” CNN President Chris Licht said in a statement on Shaw’s passing. “Even after he left CNN, Bernie remained a close member of our CNN family providing our viewers with context about historic events as recently as last year. The condolences of all of us at CNN go out to his wife Linda and his children.”

Former CNN CEO Tom Johnson treasures his half-century-long friendship with Shaw, whom he said was the paragon of the highest standards of American journalism. 

“In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Bernard Shaw Scholarship Fund at the University of Chicago. The Shaw family requests complete privacy at this time,” the family said in their statement provided by former CNN CEO Tom Johnson.

Johnson said Shaw “exemplified excellence in his life” and will be “remembered as a fierce advocate of responsible journalism” throughout his career. 

“As a journalist, he demanded accuracy and fairness in news coverage. He earned the respect of millions of viewers around the world for his integrity and independence. He resisted forcefully any lowering of ethical news standards or any compromise of solid news coverage. He always could be trusted as a reporter and as an anchor,” Johnson added.

Listen as Shaw delivers some career advice to young journalists below.

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