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CBS News veteran video editor Mark Ludlow dies at 63 after brief battle with cancer

Looking back at the career of Mark Ludlow
A look back at the career of CBS News London video editor Mark Ludlow, who died Sunday 01:47

CBS News lost a beloved family member over the weekend. Mark Jeremy Ludlow, a veteran video editor based in our London bureau, died peacefully on Sunday surrounded by family and friends. Ludlow, as most of us called him, was 63. He died after a relatively brief battle with cancer.

Former CBS News anchor Dan Rather, in a final note to Ludlow, said he was "one of the very best television news editors of this or any other generation," and called it an "honor to have you as a friend and colleague."

Ludlow started editing for NBC News in the early 1980's, following in the footsteps of his father, videographer Ken Ludlow. 

CBS News video editor Mark Ludlow, on assignment in Rwanda. CBS News

In the mid-1980s, Ludlow started working with CBS News, first as a freelancer.

Any foreign news story you've seen on CBS News since then — from wars to disasters both natural and man-made, to royal shenanigans and light-hearted features — there's a good chance Mark was the man who wove together the words and the pictures to turn it into a story for television.

He was among the best whoever plied his trade in this business. More than that, he was the best travelling companion to desperate places you could ever hope for — and he visited a few.

Ludlow was in the newly-united German capital the night the Berlin Wall came down. He was in Baghdad, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to cover the Gulf Wars; Bosnia for the siege of Sarajevo; Ukraine and Moscow as the Soviet Union crumbled and Pakistan and Afghanistan after the September 11 terror attacks of 2001.

When the inevitable hurdles reared up, Ludlow never missed a beat. If there was no electricity, he'd find some. No script until minutes before airtime, he'd still somehow pull it together.

CBS News video editor Mark Ludlow, taking part in a 2013 charity event to raise funds for the Rory Peck Trust, in London, England. CBS News

In the office, Ludlow was quick to offer his help and his humor to anyone in need of either. He made newcomers feel welcome and found a way to share his wisdom without a hint of the superiority his experience could have warranted.

Ludlow and his long-time partner and CBS News producer Jane Whitfield were married this past week. He is survived by Jane, his mother and father Judy and Ken, and his brother and sister Nick and Tracy.

In the words of CBS News president Ingrid Ciprian-Matthews, Ludlow "was a great human and will be greatly missed."

"We are grateful for the indelible mark he left on this organization and on so many of us," said Ciprian-Matthews. "We can't possibly count the contributions he has made, but we know he has made CBS News better."

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