Remembering Writer, Commentator Leon Wynter Writer and former All Things Considered commentator Leon Wynter died recently of a brain tumor at age 57. He had a keen interest in America's multicultural society — and he viewed it from the perspective of a black man, a child of immigrants, and as a banker. He was the author of American Skin: Pop Culture, Big Business and the End of White America. Hosts Robert Siegel and Michele have this remembrance.
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Remembering Writer, Commentator Leon Wynter

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Remembering Writer, Commentator Leon Wynter

Remembering Writer, Commentator Leon Wynter

Remembering Writer, Commentator Leon Wynter

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Writer and former All Things Considered commentator Leon Wynter died recently of a brain tumor at age 57. He had a keen interest in America's multicultural society — and he viewed it from the perspective of a black man, a child of immigrants, and as a banker. He was the author of American Skin: Pop Culture, Big Business and the End of White America. Hosts Robert Siegel and Michele have this remembrance.

ROBERT SIEGEL, host:

At 6-foot-7, Leon Wynter was the tallest commentator this program ever had - and the smoothest talking.

(Soundbite of archived audio)

Mr. LEON WYNTER: Middle age begins when you stop counting forward from birth, and begin to reckon your days backward from death. At 43, the news comes just in time to be true.

SIEGEL: Leon Wynter related that observation on this program in 1997. He died just a few weeks ago of a brain tumor, at age 57.

MICHELE NORRIS, host:

Leon had a keen interest in America's multicultural society, and he viewed it from the perspective of a black man, a child of immigrants, and as a banker.

SIEGEL: He worked for a time in commercial finance, and he wrote the book "American Skin: Pop Culture, Big Business, and the End of White America."

NORRIS: Leon Wynter was also a journalist who once worked at the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. That's how I first crossed paths with him. You only had to spend a few minutes with him to see that he was a big man with big passions - for his beloved Bronx, for baseball and for his family.

SIEGEL: He wrote with good humor about pop culture, and great candor about more personal matters: from his Jamaican family roots and romance gone wrong, to one of his greatest loves: music.

(Soundbite of archived audio)

Mr. WYNTER: I hear Miles playing Monk straight, no vibrato, the same recording that hypnotized me as a boy. Only now, I'm thinking about a Talking Heads lyric that asks: Well, how did I get here?

(Singing) Letting the days go by. Letting the water hold me down.

NORRIS: Former ALL THINGS CONSIDERED commentator Leon Wynter. He died last month. He was 57.

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