NEW YORK -- CBS New York is mourning the loss of Pablo Guzmán, a legendary voice in New York journalism, and a friend and colleague to many of us.
Pablo loved being a journalist, and many would argue he was one of the best street reporters in New York City.
His own story was was really something else.
New York City made Pablo Guzmán who he was. He was just like it: Brilliant, tough, with a tender side, too.
"I never knew what was going to come out of his mouth," CBS New York's Cindy Hsu said.
With Hsu and Guzman together on the CBS New York news desk, they kept it real. For him, there was no other way.
"Pablo was so original, and is going to be missed," Hsu said. "He knew everybody."
Pablo graduated the Bronx High School of Science in 1968, and attended the State University of New York at Old Westbury.
In the 1970s, before covering news in print and on radio and TV, he was making news, and his life was rough and tumble, with the Young Lords , a primarily Puerto Rican revolutionary party.
His television career highlights at Channels 5, 4 and here at 2, included everything Gotti. He gained extraordinary trust and access to all the players. Coverage of 9/11 and its aftermath and countless community stories that took him to almost every neighborhood won him legions of fans.
"I want to say it was the Yankees," producer Stephanie Cassell said. "He was holding court with the fans, having as good, or better, time than they were.
"People talked to Pablo, and it sure was true. He had a knack for bringing out the best in people, and people really trusted him," News Director Sarah Burke said.
"In the early '90s, Nelson Mandela was finally let out of prison, and he came here to speak at the U.N. I got to go to the press conference. And when it was over, one of the diplomats wanted to talk to me, and my ego was jumping. I went over, and I looked him in the eye. He wanted to talk about John Gotti, and I was like, yo, that's what it's all about," Guzmán said.
"Pablo was a unique combination of street smart and book smart," CBS New York's Tony Aiello said. "I don't think any reporter in New York history had the street cred that Pablo possessed."
"His presence made even a sensational crime story a bigger deal, that Pablo Guzman was actually there," editor Lori Burnette said.
"I was a producer. Sometimes we would mix it up over scripts, and he said Dick, when I read it, you'll follow it," Dick Brennan said.
"As a reporter, he could tell a story so uniquely, with a little bit of flair and a little bit of drama, and boy, we were caught up in it," Mary Calvi said. "He was unique."
"He just loved the Yankees. Talked about his childhood, loved going to the games. He was a sports fanatic," assignment editor Brian Lowder said.
Equal to his love for the Yankees was music. He was a connoisseur.
"Pablo was the fist person who introduced me to the music of Janelle Monae, and said to me 'This is somebody you need to watch out for," writer Kathy McGee said.
"A very warm person, had a big heart," assignment editor Wanda Prisinzano said.
Pablo Guzmán is survived by his wife Debbie and two children. He was 73 years old.
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