Don Pardo, the iconic announcer of “Saturday Night Live,” has passed away at 96.
Born in Westfield, Massachusetts on Feb. 22, 1918, Pardo began working for NBC radio in 1944. By the 1950's he transitioned to television where he was the announcer on game shows “The Price is Right” and the first incarnation of “Jeopardy!” Eventually each program either ended or left the network, but Pardo remained at NBC. He was a regular live announcer for the network and was the first voice to let viewers know that President John F. Kennedy had been shot on Nov. 22, 1963.
Pardo is best known, however, for his work on “Saturday Night Live” where he announced the show for every season except for 1981-1982. After the cold open, Pardo's voice was always heard saying, “It's Saturday Night Live!” Pardo stopped recording the intro live in New York City in 2006. He continued by pre-recording the intros and other segments from his home in Tuscon, Arizona.
An inductee of the Television Hall of Fame, Pardo also appeared on shows such as “The Simpsons” and “30 Rock” as well as films such as Woody Allen's “Radio Days” and “Honeymoon in Vegas.”
A number of “SNL” alums have already begun to send their condolences on social media.
Rest in peace, Don Pardo. Thank you.
– Casey Wilson (@caseyrosewilson) August 19, 2014
– Jay Pharoah (@JayPharoah) August 19, 2014
RIP Don Pardo. A voice that meant so much. http://t.co/X4q9TeHVbO
– Seth Meyers (@sethmeyers) August 19, 2014
On Sept 13th 2008 I heard Don Pardo say my name for the first time. I cried until the 16th. Thanks Don. I owe you a coffee.
– Bobby Moynihan (@bibbymoynihan) August 19, 2014