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Joel Siegel Dies

“I am sad to inform you of the passing of our beloved Joel Siegel. Joel died this afternoon after a long and courageous battle with cancer. He was surrounded by family and friends,” David Westin wrote in a memo to staffers this evening.

“Joel was an important part of ABC News and we will miss him. He was a brilliant reviewer and a great reporter. But much more, he was our dear friend and colleague.”

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From: Westin, David L.
To: #ABCTV News ALL
Cc: Sweeney, Anne X.
Sent: Jun 29, 2007 6:05 PM
Subject: Joel Siegel

I am sad to inform you of the passing of our beloved Joel Siegel. Joel died this afternoon after a long and courageous battle with cancer. He was surrounded by family and friends.

Joel started at WABC-TV in 1976 as the station’s entertainment critic, and in 1981 expanded his duties to include GMA. How fortunate we have both been to benefit from his great talent over the years. Viewers, the film industry, and all of his colleagues eagerly anticipated his weekly movie reviews. His sense of humor, warmth, and insight into the films he reviewed and the industry he covered made him one of the most influential and respected members of his profession.

From the time he learned of his cancer, Joel demonstrated a remarkable courage and strength in reporting on his own disease in an effort to educate and help others. He supported numerous charities around the country and in 1991, Joel and actor Gene Wilder founded Gilda’s Club, a not-for-profit organization which operates facilities that offer emotional and social support for cancer patients, their families, and friends.

Joel was an important part of ABC News and we will miss him. He was a brilliant reviewer and a great reporter. But much more, he was our dear friend and colleague. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.

As the family makes arrangements, I will let you know.

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