David Carr, Beloved NY Times Media Critic, Dies Suddenly At Age 58

Last night, journalism lost one of its very best when New York Times media critic David Carr collapsed in the newsroom and passed away, just hours after he moderated a panel discussion about the film “Citizenfour” alongside Edward Snowden. The Times’ executive editor Dean Baquet wrote in an email to the staff, “He was our biggest champion, and his unending passion for journalism and for truth will be missed by his family at The Times, by his readers around the world and by people who love journalism.” Carr was mourned on Twitter, the social network he embraced and had a special fondness for, by the many people whose lives he had touched, either personally, professionally or just with his stupendous work, which included his Media Equation column at the Times, as well as his 2008 memoir, The Night of the Gun, in which he detailed his own history of drug addiction and redemption using his investigative journalism skills.

“I now inhabit a life I don’t deserve,” Carr wrote at the end of The Night of the Gun, “but we all walk this earth feeling we are frauds. The trick is to be grateful and hope the caper doesn’t end any time soon.”

I only had the privilege of meeting Mr. Carr once and found him lovely and delightfully gruff, just as he appears in the New York Times’ documentary “Page One,” in which he is a total scene stealer. I admired his work, but more than anything, I admired how he had triumphed over drug addiction and had started his life anew, determined to never waste a second of his second chance.

Our thoughts go out to Carr’s widow, Jill Rooney Carr, and his three daughters, Erin, Maddie and Meagan, as well as all of his colleagues and friends. [NY Times]