Fred Dalton Thompson, Senator, Actor And Radio Host, Passes Away
November 2, 2015 at 4:05 AM (PT)
FRED DALTON THOMPSON, whose eclectic career included serving as U.S. Senator from TENNESSEE, candidate for President, attorney, actor in several movies and TV shows, and hosting a syndicated radio show, died SUNDAY at 73 in NASHVILLE after a recurrence of lymphoma.
THOMPSON, a VANDERBILT LAW SCHOOL graduate, was working as an assistant U.S. Attorney when he was introduced to Sen. HOWARD BAKER (R-TN), whose 1972 campaign THOMPSON ran. He then was named a counsel to the Senate WATERGATE committee, and his questioning of former WHITE HOUSE aide ALEXANDER BUTTERFIELD about the existence of tapes of conversations in the Oval Office was a key moment in the eventual resignation of President RICHARD NIXON.
THOMPSON later became a lobbyist, and then, after representing the plaintiff in a whistleblower lawsuit in TENNESSEE involving a parole administrator who refused to release inmates who had paid the Governor for their release, he played himself in a movie version of the case, "MARIE," leading to an illustrious acting career, most notably on NBC's "LAW AND ORDER." He was elected Senator in 1994 to serve out the remaining years of AL GORE's term after GORE was elected Vice President; THOMPSON served through 2002, and ran for President in 2008 but dropped out in JANUARY.
In radio, THOMPSON served as a fill-in for PAUL HARVEY on ABC NEWS RADIO, hosted a syndicated show for WESTWOOD ONE in 2009-11, and wrote a column for SALEM's TOWNHALL.COM.