Ed Bradley: “You Can Be Anything You Want, Kid”

Ed Bradley: “You Can Be Anything You Want, Kid”

Award-winning American journalist Ed Bradley was raised by his mother, Gladys, after his parents divorced when he was two years old. Bradley visited his dad in Detroit during the summer, but the boy’s home was in Philadelphia with his mom. Bradley once told People magazine that he grew up in a neighborhood where “if you didn’t fight, you got beat up.” Money was tight, but support was something he could count on. He noted, “We were poor, but there was always food on the table. I was raised by people who worked 20-hour days at two jobs each. . . . I was told ‘You can be anything you want, kid.’ When you hear that enough, you believe it.” As a Solo Mom, Gladys worked in factories, as a domestic helper, and in restaurants. Ruth Streeter, who was Bradley’s producer at 60 Minutes for 22 years, says that Gladys “was [Bradley’s] North Star, his guiding light. And she organized her life so that she could provide him every chance to get out of Philadelphia and become someone.” Bradley covered the fall of Saigon and was the first black television correspondent assigned to the White House. He received 19 Emmy awards for broadcast journalism during his career. He is best known for his work on the CBS News television program 60 Minutes.

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