Award winning talk show legend Larry King died January 23, 2021 at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles at the age of 87. While an official cause of death was not released, King had been hospitalized with the Covid-19 virus that required the application of additional oxygen.
King began his talk show career with a syndicated radio program and later moved from radio to TV via the CNN network. King interviewed thousands of people during his career including world leaders, celebrities, and the great and the good. In 1995, King was a part of the peach summit between Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, Jordan’s King Hussein, and the Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.
An “everyman” host, King had an easy going style when it came to conducting an interview. He retired in 2010 saying that it was time to hang up the suspenders after 25 years and some 50,000 interviews.
While he retired from his nightly television program, King was a workaholic who was back to work after a few months off.
His accolades include two Peabody Awards, CableACE Awards, and induction into the Radio and Broadcasting Halls of Fame.
Along with his thousands of appearances on his television series, King has appeared in hundreds of television productions including talk shows, game shows, documentaries, award shows, and telethons,
He is also listed as appearing on the daytime drama “The Edge of Night”, “Arli$$”, “Sesame Street”, “Take Two with Phineas and Ferb”, “Miami Undercover”, “Ghostbusters”, “Eddie and the Cruisers II: Eddie Lives!”, “Crazy People”, “The Exorcist III”, “The Simpsons”, “Coach”, “Murder One”, “The Long Kiss Goodnight”, “Murphy Brown”, “Spin City”, “Contact”, “The Jackal”, “Fraiser”, “Primary Colors”, “Enemy of the State”, “The Practice”, “Arthur”, “Shrek 2”, “Fat Actress”, “Law & Order: Trial by Jury”, “Boston Legal”, “Law & Order: Criminal Intent”, “Shrek the Third”, “The Closer”, “Bee Movie”, “Ugly Betty”, “30 Rock”, “Shrek Forever After”, and “American Crime Story”.
Lawrence Harvey Zieger was born November 19, 1933 in Brooklyn, the son of Eastern European Jewish parents. He began his broadcasting career in 1957 at an AM radio station in Miami. It was the station manager who gave King his new last name; claiming that Zeiger was “too Jewish”. A year later he began his slow climb from a tiny local station to the national icon the world became to know.
With fame and fortune also came financial difficulties which nearly ruined King.
A three pack a day smoking habit caused King to have a heart attack and led to quintuple bypass surgery. In subsequent years, King would suffer additional heart attacks, diabetes, and lung cancer; however, he continued to work well into his eighties.
Married eight times, divorced seven times with one annulment; King had five children. Predeceased by children Andy and Chaia, he is survived by Chance, Cannon, and Larry Jr.
feature photo credit: By Petty Officer 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley. – http://www.defenselink.mil/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=15661, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2322571