Andy Rooney, legendary ’60 Minutes’ essayist, dies at 92

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Andy Rooney, the legendary "60 Minutes" personality and essayist, died in a New York City hospital on Friday night, following "serious complications" from minor surgery, CBS News said. He was 92.

"It's a sad day at '60 Minutes' and for everybody here at CBS News," CBS News chairman Jeff Fager said in a statement. "It's hard to imagine not having Andy around. He loved his life and he lived it on his own terms. We will miss him very much.

On Oct. 25, CBS said that Rooney had suffered "serious complications" after surgery, but his condition was stable. The network did not disclose the nature of the surgery.

His death comes little more than a month after he signed off from "60 Minutes--announcing his 1,097th essay would be his last as a regular contributor.

"This is a moment I have dreaded," Rooney said in his final appearance. "I wish I could do this forever. I can't though. But I'm not retiring. Writers don't retire and I'll always be a writer. A lot of you have sent me wonderful letters and said good things to me when you meet me in the street. I wasn't always gracious about it. It's hard to accept being liked. I don't say this often, but thank you."

More from CBS News:

Rooney wrote for television since its birth, spending more than 60 years at CBS, 30 of them behind the camera as a writer and producer, first for entertainment and then news programming, before becoming a television personality - a role he said he was never comfortable in. He preferred to be known as a writer and was the author of best-selling books and a national newspaper column, in addition to his "60 Minutes" essays.

But it is his television role as the inquisitive and cranky commentator on "60 Minutes" that made him a cultural icon. For over 30 years, Rooney had the last word on the most watched television program in history.

And from Rooney's New York Times obituary:

Mr. Rooney entered television shortly after World War II, writing material for entertainers like Arthur Godfrey, Victor Borge, Herb Shriner, Sam Levenson and Garry Moore. Beginning in 1962, he had a six-year association with the CBS News correspondent Harry Reasoner, who narrated a series of Everyman "essays" written by Mr. Rooney.

But it was "A Few Minutes With Andy Rooney," his weekly segment on "60 Minutes," that made him one of the most popular broadcast figures in the country. With his jowls, bushy eyebrows, deeply circled eyes and advancing years, he seemed every inch the homespun philosopher as he addressed mostly mundane subjects with varying degrees of befuddlement, vexation and sometimes even pleasure.

Here's a link to the video of Rooney's first "60 Minutes" essay.

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