The longtime TV news journalist, columnist and author retired today from CBS Sunday Morning after 31 years as a correspondent on the program.
“When we first met way back in 1987, my hair was bright red and my children were, well, actual children. You’ve met my daughter, Libby…my son, Willie…my wife, Jody … my grandkids…my dog… even my brother-in-law. (“How’d he get in there?”),” Geist told viewers.
Geist’s son is, of course, Morning Joe co-host and Sunday Today host Willie Geist. His daughter is Emmy award-winning documentarian Libby Geist. TV journalism is in the family’s blood.
Geist’s quirky, humorous “slice of life” segments on Sunday Morning were a nice respite from the oft-chaotic world television news can depict.
It was always fun following Geist across the country.
“We’ve been on the road together, hitting major attractions, venturing far off the beaten path, for competitive stone skipping,” Geist said. “When critics say the media doesn’t cover rural America, don’t look at us. We’ve gone to skads of small towns!” he continued.
One of the most important moments of Geist’s career (and life) was July 1, 2012, when he revealed on CBS Sunday Morning that he had Parkinson’s Disease.
“I’ve had it for years, told no one, not even my kids. I didn’t want them to worry, didn’t want to be seen as ‘the sick guy,’ Geist told viewers. “Today, I’m telling you.”
The younger Geist, filling in for Matt Lauer that week on Today, said on air: “That was my most proud day with my dad. That was not easy for him because I know what he’s gone through over the years to deal with it. So, very proud and more proud that he’s going to now help people.”
Here’s a fun, well-deserved trip down memory lane: