DEAD: ON THIS DATE
Max Robinson (aged 49)
-First African-American broadcast network news anchor in the United States
Maxie Cleveland “Max” Robinson, Jr. (May 1, 1939 – December 20, 1988) was an American broadcast journalist, most notably serving as co-anchor on ABC World News Tonight alongside Frank Reynolds and Peter Jennings from 1978 until 1983. Robinson is noted as the first African-American broadcast network news anchor in the United States. Robinson was a founder of the National Association of Black Journalists.
DEATH: Robinson was found to have AIDS while he was hospitalized for pneumonia in Illinois; but he kept it a secret, refusing to discuss it, despite widespread rumors about why his health was deteriorating. In the fall of 1988, Robinson was in Washington to deliver a speech at Howard University’s School of Communications when he became increasingly ill. Robinson checked himself into Howard University Hospital or a hospital in Blue Island, Illinois where he died of complications due to AIDS on December 20, 1988. He had asked that his family reveal that he had AIDS so that, according to the new reports, “Others in the black community would be alerted to the dangers and the need for treatment and education.”