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Ex-Today Show Co-Host Jim Hartz Dead at 82

Jim Hartz

Former Today co-host Jim Hartz died April 17 in Fairfax County, Virginia, aged 82, Deadline reports. According to Hartz's widow, Alexandra Dickson Hartz, the reporter died of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

In 1974, Hartz joined NBC's flagship morning program, where he sat alongside Barbara Walters, replacing the late Frank McGee. Before Today, Oklahoma-born Hartz worked at Tulsa's KOTV and served as an anchor for evening newscasts on WNBC.

Walters departed the chatfest in 1976, to be replaced by Jane Pauley. Pauley and Hartz were deemed to have similar low-key styles, so Hartz was replaced by Tom Brokaw. Hartz morphed into a "roving host" for a bit, before heading to WRC, NBC's Washington affiliate, where he was a news anchor. Then, he hosted numerous talk shows at PBS.

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Hartz is survived by his wife, daughters Jana Hartz Maher and Nancy Hartz Cole, six grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by son John Mitchell Hartz.

Fellow journalists paid tribute on social media. Steve Herman tweeted:

Stephen Battaglio added: