Larry King, legendary talk show host famous for interviewing celebrities, politicians, and everyday people alike, died on Saturday in Los Angeles at the age of 87. King’s passing was announced on his verified Facebook page on Saturday and was later confirmed by his son, Chance King. A representative of Ora Media, which King co-founded, announced that King died at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in LA
“With a heavy heart, we announce the passing of one of our founders, host, and a very dear friend to the Ora Media family,” Ora Media announced. “Larry King passed away at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in LA. He was 87 years.”
Larry King was famous for his talk show which aired for over 25 years. The Larry King Live set extremely high standards for other talk show hosts and helped to reinvent interview styles. For more than two decades, King made a name for himself interviewing everyone from athletes to officeholders, actors, musicians, and everyday people.
King’s career as a Disc Jockey then later a radio and television show anchor started in 1957. King won many awards, including an Emmy and two Peabodys, throughout his career. The Facebook statement briefly described King’s over 63 years of active performance on the radio, television, and the digital space. Altogether King had over 30,000 interviews, interviewing 7 sitting American presidents from Gerald Ford to Barack Obama.
Though the statement did not state a cause of death, King tested positive for the coronavirus a few weeks ago and was being treated for COVID-19 complications at Cedars-Sinai before he died. King also had many health challenges including heart attacks, lung cancer, and angina. He had multiple surgeries including one for his lung cancer and quintuple bypass surgery.
The legendary show host was also a successful writer, publishing many books including “Daddy Day, Daughter Day” which he co-wrote with his late daughter, Chaia King. King took a friendly and easygoing attitude during his interviews, preferring to have his guests talk for as long as they wanted instead of interrupting them. He took a genuine interest in his guests and treated them all the same way, regardless of whether he was interviewing a US president or just anyone.
Many notable names in the industry have mourned his passing and described how he revolutionized talk shows. CNN founder, Ted Turner, said he took the death of King very badly and felt like he had just been “punched in his gut” when he heard the news of his passing. Turner described King as “a close and dear friend” and “the greatest broadcast journalist” the world has ever listened to and watched.
“Creating CNN and employing Larry are two of the greatest achievements of my career so far,” Turner said. “He was one of my closest and dearest friends, and he was a mentor to a lot of people and a great friend to all the people he worked with.”
Jeff Zucker, the president of CNN, and Nancy Grace, a show host who worked with King, also mourned his passing. Zucker said King’s work with the station helped it become a major news channel all over the world. Grace described King’s exceptional interview style, stating that he will remain the best in the industry.