“At the age of 14,” Feder tells his former paper, the Sun-Times, “I wrote to him for the first time, expressing my respect and admiration for his work and declaring that I’d formed a fan club in his honor. About a week or so later, I received a letter back from him, bestowing his blessing on my effort…Thus was born the one and only Walter Cronkite Fan Club.”
The club would end up with more than a thousand members — “including many prominent figures in broadcasting, entertainment and politics” — and Feder and Cronkite became lifelong friends.
For Feder, Cronkite was the gold standard. “No anchorman before or since has come close to his reputation for integrity and credibility… unlike many of his lesser contemporaries, he never cashed in on the public’s trust — and he never sold out.”