GMA Remembers Trailblazing Reporter Ed Bradley

"60 Minutes" veteran Ed Bradley died Thursday at the age of 65 from complications related to leukemia.

Bradley will be remembered as a man with a natural gift for reporting, style and an earring. He also lived life with gusto and a passion for jazz.

As one colleague put it, Bradley was like Elvis; just walking around with him made you cooler by association.

But Bradley was more than just cool; he was compassionate, injecting every story with humanity and the sense that he was taking viewers along on a great adventure.

"As a child, even as a young adult, in my wildest imagination, I could not have imagined the life that I would live. … The life that I have been privileged to lead," Bradley said.

Week after week, Bradley brought humanity and dignity into our living rooms -- a gentle touch, a tenacious spirit.

"He inspired a generation of journalists of all colors. But for people of color, he was something of a national treasure," said ABC News reporter Pierre Thomas.

Bradley's gift was to go beyond the facts, to bring viewers the world.

In 1979, during a "60 Minutes" report, he helped rescue drowning Vietnamese refugees.

"There was a dignity about him that could transform any situation, and he was great for seizing the moment," CBS News' Steve Kroft said.

Bradley loved music and he could sing, even once performing with the Neville Brothers.

When "Good Morning America" anchor Diane Sawyer met Bradley, she had just become the first woman on "60 Minutes."

"He called me into his office, which was filled with so many plants. It was like entering a botanical garden," Sawyer said. "I remember fighting them aside, sitting down, and he said to me, 'I know what you're going through. Why don't we do this together?'"

Through the years, Bradley used to say his real gift was listening; but in fact, his way of listening was genius.

In one interview, Bradley talked candidly with singer Lena Horne.

"If a lady treats other people as she likes to be treated, then she's allowed to go roll in the grass if she wants to," Horne told Bradley.

"Even if she's 64?" he asked.

"Particularly then," she said.

"If I arrived at the pearly gates and St. Peter said, 'What did you do to deserve entry?' I'd just say, 'Did you see my Lena Horne story?'" Bradley said after the interview.

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