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Larry King, TV chatshow veteran, in hospital with coronavirus

The Guardian logo The Guardian 03/01/2021 Guardian staff
a close up of Larry King in glasses looking at the camera: Photograph: Kevork Djansezian/EPA © Provided by The Guardian Photograph: Kevork Djansezian/EPA

The former CNN talk show host Larry King has been hospitalised with Covid-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported.

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Citing an unidentified person close to the family, CNN said the 87-year-old was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. Hospital protocols have kept King’s family members from visiting him.

“Larry has fought so many health issues in the last few years and he is fighting this one hard too, he’s a champ,” ABC News reported a source close to the family as saying, after the story was first reported in a showbiz column.

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In 2017, King revealed he had been treated for lung cancer. In 2019 he had an angioplasty and suffered a stroke. He survived a major heart attack in 1987.

The Peabody Award-winning broadcaster was among America’s most prominent interviewers of celebrities, presidents and other newsmakers in a half-century career that included 25 years of a nightly show on CNN. At its peak, Larry King Live brought in 1.5 million viewers a night.

a close up of Larry King wearing glasses and looking at the camera: Talk-show host Larry King has reportedly been taken to hospital suffering Covid-19. © Photograph: Kevork Djansezian/EPA Talk-show host Larry King has reportedly been taken to hospital suffering Covid-19.

In his six-decade career, King has interviewed a vast array of celebrities and political leaders, including Nelson Mandela, Yasser Arafat, every US president from Richard Nixon to Donald Trump.

After leaving CNN in 2010, when he was famously usurped by the British journalist Piers Morgan, King continued broadcasting on a platform co-founded with Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim. In 2013 the Russian state broadcaster, RT (previously Russia Today) picked up the shows King had been making, a talkshow and a politics show.

Last year, King lost two of his five children within weeks. Son Andy King died of a heart attack at 65 in August, and daughter Chaia King died from lung cancer at 51 in July, Larry King said then in a statement.


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