Jim Romenesko was kind enough to publish my letter about Christopher Glenn's passing this morning. I've gotten several e-mails as a result.
Sean Scully wrote, "I hear his voice in my head more clearly even than I hear Cronkite's, and we watched 'Uncle Walter' every night. Christopher Glenn was something of a forgotten icon."
John Lammers, the projects editor at the Syracuse Post-Standard, e-mailed, "How many of us owe our career choice to him?"
Mike Merschel of the Dallas Morning News wrote: "From one journalist to another, you nailed it. The sugary cereal, the Hudson Brothers (were they triplets? Or did they all just go to the same barber as the Doobie Brothers? I never figured that out), Christopher Glenn delivering real news in that great voice of his.
"I'm about to turn 40; I'm guessing you're in the same demographic. The baby boomers' icons may get all the press, but our own icons are just as important. And Christopher Glenn was a biggie."
As TV Squad put it before he retired in February:
Adults of "a certain age" (translation: 30 and older) might remember a CBS current-events program called In The News, which aired in between the network's Saturday morning cartoons. These short reports were able to inform young viewers about the news of the week without talking down to them or going over their heads. Most people will remember the program, though, for the distinctive voice of its narrator, Christopher Glenn, who narrated and/or reported over 5,000 episodes of the broadcast, which ran from 1971-1984.
Now comes word that Glenn, who currently works for CBS Radio, is set to retire next month, after 35 years at CBS News (that's as long as I've been alive, for crissakes!). I for one enjoyed In The News, but I rooted for Carter to win against Ford when I was 5, so maybe I was a ready-made audience for the program.
AN UPDATE: Jeff Borden of Chicago took issue with my comment about The Hudson Brothers Razzle Dazzle Show in the Romenesko posting:
You make a great point about Christopher Glenn. Man, what a set of pipes.
However, I believe you may have unfairly maligned the Hudson Brothers. I recall laughing quite hysterically on many a Saturday morning when I was watching the program with my roommates in college. I'm reasonably sure the low-grade pot were were inhaling had absolutely nothing to do with it. At least, I think so.
Seriously, thanks for speaking eloquently about the guy. I feared he might be ill when he retired. I'm sorry those fears weren't unfounded.
I replied that it wasn't my intention to malign the Hudson Brother in the least. I hold them in the highest regard. I still remember the episode where Brett Hudson spends the entire show going, "I got a parcheesi up my nose and I can't get it down!"
If anything, the Salad can trace its genetic DNA straight back to Bill, Mark and Brett.
Speaking of which, treat yourself to a stroll down memory lane. Here's the longest show opening in TV history:
My favorite part: the very sober and serious introduction of, "...THE BEAR!"