With Fanfare, the TV Industry Makes News by Celebrating the Wide World of Roone
updated 03/28/1983 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 03/28/1983 AT 01:00 AM EST
The catchiest segment—co-hosted by Barbara Walters, Dan Rather and Tom Brokaw—was marked by foul-ups. Tom, Dan and Barbara blithely ad-libbed after botching their cues, but the high points of the evening were telegrams and videotaped greetings from celeb no-shows. "I regret that I could not be with you tonight due to a previous commitment to spark riots and unrest in the Middle East," Carter cabled from Israel. "He [Roone] may not always be right, but he's never dull," Nixon announced by videotape from New Jersey. Echoing a familiar theme of the evening, President Reagan chimed in with his encomium: "Roone, your contributions have been significant enough; I want you to know that I consider Sam Donaldson a small price to pay."
After Brokaw had complained that the evening "feels like it's been as long as The Winds of War," the five-hour fete ended with a typically understated network salute: a full-fledged fanfare from the West Point Cadet Band and Glee Club.