Bob Beckel, Fox News 'The Five' Host, Dead at 73

Bob Beckel, a longtime political analyst and former Fox News The Five host, has died. Beckel passed away earlier this month at the age of 73. A cause of death was not specified. News of Beckel's passing was first shared by his longtime friend, columnist Cal Thomas, who remembered Beckel as a "friend and spiritual brother" in a moving Facebook tribute.

In the post, shared on Monday, Feb. 21, Thomas informed his followers that Beckel "passed into the presence of the Lord he loved." Thomas went on to share that he and Beckel "did so many things together and I hope we modeled what two people of different political persuasions can be like when they love one another...I will see you soon Bob. You are loved." Talk show host Sean Hannity also announced Beckel's death at the end of Hannity, which Beckel appeared as a panelist on from 2009 until 2017, on Monday, telling viewers, "We end the show with sad personal news. A very dear friend of this channel and a dear friend personally ... has died."

Born in New York City in 1948, Beckel attended Wagner College in Staten Island, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Beckel, a Democrat, notably served as a campaign manager for Walter Mondale's 1984 presidential campaign. After Mondale lost to Ronald Reagan, Beckel formed consulting firm Bob Beckel & Associates that same year and went on to manage Alan Blinken's campaign for United States Senate in 2002. He joined Fox News as a contributor in 2000, going on to became one of the original co-hosts of FNC's The Five in 2011. He co-hosted more than 700 episodes of The Five. Beckel was fired from Fox in 2017 for allegedly making racially charged remarks toward a Black employee of the network.

In addition to his political and broadcasting career, Beckel in 2015 published his memoir, I Should Be Dead: My Life Surviving Politics, TV, and Addiction, in which he discussed his long battle with substance abuse. Beckel also co-authored the "Common Ground" columns published in USA Today with conservative commentator Cal Thomas for over 10 years, according to Fox News, which also noted that Beckel made appearances on CBS This Morning, NBC Nightly News, Good Morning America, Nightline, Face the Nation, and Meet the Press.

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Beckel is survived by his two children. News of his passing led to an outpouring of tributes, with Megyn Kelly sharing, "Never knew a funnier, kinder or more self-deprecating guy. On set or off, you could count on Bob for great stories, sharp political insights & (always) humor. He was quick to help others & asked for nothing in return. Rest In Peace, old friend."