Mark Shields Death, PBS NewsHour commentator dies at age 85
- by Alex Danvers
Mark Shields Obituary, Death – Mark Shields, a veteran commentator for PBS News who was best known for the weekly political analysis he provided, passed away early Saturday morning at the age of 85, according to PBS NewsHour. According to a statement provided by NewsHour spokesman Nick Massella to NPR, Shields passed away from kidney failure at his home in Chevy Chase, Maryland. Prior to his retirement in 2020, Shields offered an insightful commentary on the administrations of six U.S. presidents, as well as on the Persian Gulf War, the Iran-Contra crisis, and the attacks on September 11, 2001. His term in office lasted for a total of 33 years.
In a tweet announcing Shields’ death, Judy Woodruff, the anchor and managing editor of NewsHour, stated that he was recognized for both his sense of humor and his extensive understanding of American politics. “I am heartbroken to share this..the @NewsHour’s beloved long-time Friday night analyst Mark Shields, who for decades wowed us with his encyclopedic knowledge of American politics, his sense of humor, and most importantly his big heart, has passed away at the age of 85, with his wife Anne at his side,” tweeted Woodruff. “Mark Shields, who for decades wowed us with his encyclopedic knowledge of American politics, his sense of humor
In a statement, Mr. Woodruff also said the following: “Mark Shields possessed a wonderful mix of qualities, including an unparalleled understanding of politics as well as a passion, pleasure, and irrepressible humor that shined through in all of his work. Mark Shields passed away in 2013. He had a lot of respect for politicians in general, but he was able to detect a fake and was never afraid to speak out against injustice. Along with Jim Lehrer and Robin MacNeil, he embodied everything that makes the PBS NewsHour stand out from other news programs.”
Shields has been referred to as “the wittiest political commentator around” by The Wall Street Journal, while The Washington Post has referred to him as “a walking almanac of American politics.” Shortly after Shields retired, David Brooks, a columnist for The New York Times, observed that “Mark exudes a generosity of spirit that enhances everyone who comes within his light.” Brooks said this of Shields. Over the course of nearly two decades, the two of them spoke politics together on the NewsHour every Friday evening.
Shields was a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and was born and raised in the town of Weymouth, Massachusetts. Following his graduation from college, Shields enlisted in the Marine Corps of the United States of America. After that, he participated in a number of municipal as well as presidential campaigns before beginning his career at PBS in the year 1988. In addition to that, Shields contributed columns to a number of news organizations, including CNN and ABC.
In a commentary that he gave in 2006 for NPR’s “This American Life,” he displayed his well-known sense of humor “As part of the “This I Believe” series, I wrote the following: “I appreciate tremendously the politician who is able to confront defeat with humor and grace.” Nobody has ever been able to accept defeat more gracefully than Dick Tuck, who, after losing a primary election for a state senate seat in California, was quoted as saying, “The people have spoken… the bastards.””
Mark Shields Obituary, Death – Mark Shields, a veteran commentator for PBS News who was best known for the weekly political analysis he provided, passed away early Saturday morning at the age of 85, according to PBS NewsHour. According to a statement provided by NewsHour spokesman Nick Massella to NPR, Shields passed away from kidney…