While on vacation, he stopped in Kansas City, picked up a copy of the Star and read of an opening at KCMO Radio. He was hired in 1936 as the station’s entire news and sports department.
He began visiting 12th Street, where the wild night scene “helped me grow up in a hurry.” On Election Day, two policemen working for Tom Pendergast escorted Cronkite to a polling station and instructed him to vote — twice.
He met Betsy Maxwell, who had just been hired from the University of Missouri’s journalism school to write advertising copy for the station. She and Walter met on her third day of work and began a lengthy courtship.
“Betsy and I went from the studio to lunch and from lunch to dinner. And from KCMO through life together,” Cronkite wrote. The couple married in 1940 at Grace and Holy Trinity Cathedral. Betsy Cronkite died in 2005, two weeks before the couple’s 65th anniversary.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Kansas City star remembers Cronkite's days at newspaper
Kansas City Star television reporter Aaron Barnhart has posted an article remembering the late Walter Cronkite's beginnings at the Star: