60 Minutes Says Goodbye to Andy Rooney

Elizabeth Field

Andy Rooney began his 60 Minutes end segment “A Few Minutes with Andy Rooney” in the summer 1978. Throughout the decades, Rooney used his deadpan humor to satire the oddities of

Rooney’s popular 60 Minutes segment brought him fame and recognition as the “quintessential curmudgeon.”

modern living and technology. Less than one month after his final appearance, Andy Rooney died at the age of 92.

Rooney’s popular 60 Minutes segment brought him fame and recognition as the “quintessential curmudgeon.” He gave his exasperated opinion on nearly everything, questioning the uselessness of paperweights, cotton inside prescription bottles, and the frustration of flying in a post 9/11 world.

In his first ever segment on July 2, 1978, he complained about the researchers who kept count of how many people die in car accidents on holiday weekends. He continued these rants throughout his career and even discussed his distaste for modern art, saying, “When did bright-colored plastic cows, pigs, and rabbits get to be art?”

Over 30 years later, in his final segment, true to his grumpy nature, he complained about being bothered by fans. “A lot of you have sent me wonderful letters and said good things to me when you meet me in the street. I wasn’t always gracious about it. It’s hard to accept being liked. I don’t say this often, but thank you. Although, if you do see me in a restaurant, please, just let me eat my dinner.”

CBS reported that their beloved commentator died on November 4, 2011 of complications following minor surgery. “Andy always said he wanted to work until the day he died, and he managed to do it, save the last few weeks in the hospital,” said his 60 Minutes colleague, Steve Kroft.

“Words cannot adequately express Andy’s contribution to the world of journalism and the impact he made—as a colleague and a friend—upon everybody at CBS,” said Leslie Moonves, CBS president.

In his final broadcast, he reflected on his life, saying, “I’ve done a lot of complaining here, but of all the things I’ve complained about, I can’t complain about my life…This is a moment I’ve dreaded. I wish I could do this forever. I can’t though. But I’m not retiring; writers don’t retire, and I’ll always be a writer.”