Monday, April 23, 2007

David Halberstam Killed in Car Crash

Author David Halberstam was killed in a San Francisco area car accident today when the vehicle in which he was riding was hit broadside by another car.

"Looking at the accident and examining him at the scene indicated it's most likely internal injuries," Foucrault said.

The driver of the car carrying Halberstam is a student at the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley, and was taken to Stanford Medical Center. Two others were injured.

Halberstam spoke Saturday at a UC Berkeley-sponsored event on the craft of journalism and what it means to turn reporting into a work of history.
David Halberstam was probably best known for what his publisher called his "trilogy on power in America," The Best and the Brightest, The Powers That Be, and The Reckoning. Along the way, he even earned a Pulitzer Prize, but he was one of my favorites mainly because he was such a great baseball writer who so ably recreated bygone eras of baseball history. In fact, three of my favorite baseball books were written by Halberstam and I highly recommend them to any fans of the game who may have missed them up to now. Summer of '49 is the story of the 1949 pennant race between the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox and October 1964 recounts the 1964 season that ended in a World Series clash between those same Yankees and the St. Louis Cardinals.

But I think that the best of Halberstam's baseball books is one that he wrote in 2003, The Teammates: A Portrait of a Friendship, in which he captures an October 2001 road trip of some 1300 miles taken by a couple of old Boston Red Sox teammates of Ted Williams who decide to visit him one last time before he dies. It is an unforgettable true story that defines the real meaning of friendship.

David Halberstam will be missed. May he rest in peace.


  1. Thank you for posting on Halberstam. He was an amazing journalist and I know so many who love his books on baseball. I remember seeing him on TV right after 9/11, in a panel with David McCullough and Doris Kearns Goodwin, and felt they lent gravity and sanity to otherwise hysterical news coverage.

    He will be missed.

  2. He had an amazing career almost from the start. It's such a shame to have someone with his talent taken from us this way.