Three weeks into a new job, a young producer suggested to the show’s iconic host that he interview Charles Manson. The host bristled, “recalling how the events of 1969 had terrorized his own family who lived in the area.” The producer persisted, announcing “Manson was quietly up for parole.”
That was enough for the producer, Shelley Ross, to convince her new boss, Tom Snyder to get “on the next plane” to interview the mass murderer, 13 years after the crime. Shelley Ross, who went on to producer stardom at ABC News, emailed TVNewser today to share her thoughts about her mentor, who died Sunday after complications with leukemia.
“No one was more original. No one was more provocative or innovative. No one was more positive long after a show’s cancellation,” said Ross of the Tomorrow show host. “‘I had a great run,’ he always said of those eight years, which wasn’t long enough for the rest of us.”
Ross is herself back in the news these days. After leaving ABC earlier this year, she is being talked about to take on another broadcast assignment, this time at CBS News.
On Snyder, Ross tells TVNewser, “this man was so unbelievable, I’ve worked with a lot of people, Tom is a class act.”