2. Peter Jennings
Jennings dropped out of high school to work full-time as a radio reporter. He started with ABC News in 1964 and covered everything from the Civil Rights movement to the Middle East conflict before he became the network’s evening news anchor. A longtime smoker, Jennings quit for a time, only to restart after 9/11. He underwent aggressive chemotherapy for lung cancer, only to die of the disease in 2005. The famed ABC World News Tonight anchor was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2005. “As some of you now know, I have learned in the last couple of days that I have lung cancer. Yes, I was a smoker until about 20 years ago, and I was weak and I smoked over 9/11,” he said with a scratchy voice during his broadcast on April 5, 2005. “But whatever the reason, the news does slow you down a bit.” He passed away on August 7, 2005 at age 67.