'Consummate' journalist and former CNN reporter passes away

1991: Stuart Loory reports on the fall of Soviet Union
1991: Stuart Loory reports on the fall of Soviet Union

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    1991: Stuart Loory reports on the fall of Soviet Union

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1991: Stuart Loory reports on the fall of Soviet Union 01:30

Story highlights

  • Ted Turner says Stuart Loory was an excellent journalist
  • Loory covered Johnson, Nixon, early manned space flights
  • He was a Moscow correspondent twice, once for CNN

(CNN)A veteran journalist and former CNN great has passed away.

Stuart Loory, 82, died Friday in his home in Brooklyn, New York, after battling cancer.
In addition to working as a correspondent, Loory oversaw CNN bureaus in Washington and Moscow. He later became a vice president of Turner Broadcasting System.
    But it hardly sums up his life, which was about following his passion for a good story to various points on the map.
    "Stu was an excellent journalist and a great friend," CNN founder Ted Turner said Saturday. "He was instrumental in helping to launch the first Goodwill Games in Moscow, a loyal executive and leader at 'CNN World Report' and, of course, was well-known as one of the finest bureau chiefs at CNN, running the first Washington, D.C. bureau and later opening the Moscow bureau. He will be sorely missed."
    "He was the consummate journalist," said his son, Josh Loory, who also became a news producer.
    Stuart Loory got his start in the mid-1950s as a newspaper reporter at the Newark Evening News, which is no longer in print. In 1958, he moved to Vienna, Austria, on a Pulitzer travel fellowship, and took the family with him, his son said.
    Josh was 3 months old then. In the course of his father's career, he would attend eight different schools in 12 years as they hopped between Moscow, Washington, New York, Chicago and Atlanta.
    "The people that he knew and the circles that he traveled in were absolutely amazing," his son said.
    Josh Loory remembers sailing with former Secretary of State and diplomacy icon Henry Kissinger.
    Before coming to CNN, Loory ran various operations for major daily newspapers. He reported on the White House for the Los Angeles Times. "He covered the end of the (Lyndon) Johnson administration and the (Richard) Nixon administration," his son said.
    "Loory was included on (Richard) Nixon's 'enemies list' of political opponents," according to his biography on the website of the University of Missouri, where he taught from 1997 on after leaving CNN.
    He had a passion for science, which he wrote about at The New York Times. "He covered every manned space flight from Mercury through Gemini," his son said.
    Later, Loory covered NASA space shuttle flights for CNN.
    Before making the switch to TV journalism for CNN in 1980, he was managing editor of the Chicago Sun-Times.
    CNN sent him back to Moscow.
    Former CNN News Group Chairman Tom Johnson said, "He never backed away from asking heads of state the most difficult questions. I saw that firsthand in White House press conferences with President Johnson, and in the Kremlin with both Presidents Gorbachev and Yeltsin.
    "Stuart was instrumental in obtaining exclusive CNN coverage with Russian television as President Gorbachev resigned from office. He also was instrumental in arranging exclusive CNN-Russian television‎'s first interview with Boris Yeltsin after Yeltsin took office."
    In the bitter cold of Moscow, Loory once reported wearing a huge hat and received a message telling him he'd look better if he left it off.
    Loory faced danger on the job, as when he covered the civil rights movement in Alabama in the 1960s.
    "In Montgomery, he witnessed the beating the Freedom Riders got," said another son, Adam Loory. "He said someone helped him get away from the melee by saying, 'Take off your tie and glasses and follow me.' When he realized he was leaving the scene, he said, 'Take me back, I have to follow the story.' Back at the bus station, he found John Lewis on the ground bleeding and helped get him to a hospital."
    Josh Loory said his father was a family man -- and an all-round journalist.
    He wanted to look out for the downtrodden, Josh Loory said. "He liked to shine the light of the media where it needed to be shined."
    He is survived by his wife and three children.