The story surrounding Eric Wishnie, the Emmy-winning NBC News producer who fell to his death in Greenwich Village yesterday, just gets more and more depressing. The Daily News reports that his 10-year marriage to Dateline‘s Dawn Fratangelo was in a state of collapse and that Wishnie was fired from NBC in 2006 because of his alcohol and pill addictions. Wishnie regularly had vodka delivered to his apartment, according to the Post. Brian Williams wrote a tribute to Wishnie in his blog:
“As he had done for years with Tom Brokaw before me, Eric and I travelled the globe. The tsunami in Indonesia, the war in Iraq … we interviewed presidents and world leaders. He was an enormously talented producer and one of the funniest guys I’ve ever met … He raised self-effacing humor to an art form, and he is responsible for easily a quarter of all the music on my iPod. I would often come into work in the morning to find a new CD on my computer keyboard, along with a note from my friend and fellow music-lover Eric — saying that it was vital that I hear this particular new band. He left the News Division a while back, but the place still bears his mark. We will now bear the burden of his loss, along with his loved ones, and of not having Eric in our lives anymore.”
Wishnie passed away after a 30-foot fall from the garden roof of his three-story apartment building at West 10th Street & Sixth Avenue. Police found a dozen vodka bottles, empty pill bottles and months of unopened mail inside.