Voice of Saturday Night Live Dead at 96

Don Pardo lent voice to Jeopardy!, Today show, and more
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2014 7:30 AM CDT

One of television's most enduring presences has passed away at the age of 96. Announcer Don Pardo, known for introducing Saturday Night Live for decades, died at his home in Arizona yesterday, the AP reports; the cause hasn't been revealed, though the Los Angeles Times notes that he broke a hip last year. Pardo began working in radio in the 1940s. Hired by NBC in 1944, he remained with the network for the rest of his career. He worked as an announcer for game shows like the original Jeopardy! as well as comedies, including Your Show of Shows.

In 1975 he began his tenure with Saturday Night Live, for which he used his booming voice to announce cast lineups; producer Lorne Michaels praised his "authority voice." "Nothing is like the moment when Don Pardo says your name," Jimmy Fallon once said. He also made appearances in music videos, films, and elsewhere on television. He officially retired in 2004, but continued to offer SNL's introduction up until the end of last season. Pardo, who is survived by five children, entered the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Hall of Fame in 2010. (More Don Pardo stories.)

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