Newsman, Author, Teacher Mickey Carroll Dies

Mickey Carroll on stage.

Backstage: Mickey Carroll, Eric Shawn, Molly Gordy, Jim Harney.

 

Mickey Carroll, friend, raconteur, past president of the Inner Circle, voice of the Quinnipiac University Poll and one of the finest reporters of his era, died Dec. 6, 2017 in his family home in New Jersey after a short illness, according to his family.  He was 86 years old.

Mickey joined the Inner Circle in 1965, hailing from the New York Herald Tribune. He served as president in 1974 during the administration of Mayor Abe Beame.

He covered politics for more than 40 years for the Trib, the New York Times, Newsday and the other newspapers. Since 1995, Mickey was the voice of the Quinnipiac Poll, providing analysis of results of national polls and surveys in New  York, New Jersey and other states. He was the perfect sound bite: colorful, politically-insightful and delivered with a vintage New Yawk accent.

He also taught Journalism at Quinnipiac, Columbia University, New York University and Montclair State University.

“Mickey Carroll was a reporter in the finest tradition of American journalism, a dedicated educator and a knowledgeable commentator on the American political scene,” said Quinnipiac University President John L. Lahey. “He educated thousands in the classroom and millions through his reporting and his work with the poll.”

“Saddened by the passing of Mickey Carroll,” Governor Andrew Cuomo said in a tweet. “He was a gentlemen who cared deeply about the truth and about New York. He will be missed.”

“1974 Marked Down to 1973” Mickey Carroll was president that year, 1974.

 

“All of us in the Inner Circle will deeply miss Mickey,” said IC President Polly Kreisman. “He had some great roles in our shows, and he always approached his performances like his reporting – he was prepared, talented and creative.”

Mickey Carroll is at the far right rear against the brick wall in a dark jacket at the moment Jack Ruby shot Lee Harvey Oswald in Dallas in 1963.

As a reporter at the Trib, Mickey was sent to Dallas the day after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. He is seen in one of the historic photos of Jack Ruby shooting Lee Harvey Oswald. “I may have shouted the last words he was ever to hear,” he wrote in 2013. “How about it, Lee?”

His comprehensive reporting of the killings led him to be a firm believer in the Warren Commission Report. But always the demanding reporter, he complained the Warren report was so badly written that many people believed the conspiracy theorists instead.

Mickey wrote books about the Kennedy assassination, covered Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King in Selma, Ala., and authored a book on the Iran hostage situation in 1979-80.

Maurice “Mickey” Carroll was raised in Rutherford, N.J. He attended Notre Dame University and served in the U.S. Army. He was married for 30 years to popular Daily News columnist Beth Fallon (IC president in 1988), who died in 2006. He is survived by his former wife, Peggy, with whom he remained very close; his son, New Jersey Assembly member Michael Carroll, daughters Eileen and Elizabeth, 10 grandchildren and a sister, Anne Shannon. Another son, Patrick, died in 2005.

 

 

 

 

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2 Comments

  1. I met Mickey in 1961 when I was a young reporter at the Star-Ledger. Unlike the rest of the seasoned veterans who chose to ignore the new kid straight out of Rutgers, Mickey summoned me to the copy desk, where he was moonlighting on weekends, and said, “C’ere kid. Wanna learn how to write headlines?”
    I said “yes,” and it began a friendship that lasted through the decades.
    He was always helpful to me, first at the Ledger, then whenever I’d run into him on a story. I especially appreciated his cynical sense of humor and his curmudgeonly ways.
    When Congressman Ted Weiss, the liberal icon from the Upper West Side, died in 1992, Mickey and I sat next to each other at the funeral. As Weiss was being heralded by politician after politician, Mickey sat grumpily.
    When I asked what his problem was, he said “when I go to a funeral I want ritual. None of this political bullshit.”
    In recent years, when I needed polling data for election stories, he was always my first call. He gave me the data along with pithy comments and spicy analysis that other pollsters seemed to lack.
    I remember his being lots of fun at Inner Circle rehearsals and subway rides uptown.
    So long, Mickey. It ain’t gonna be the same without you.
    Bob Wiener

  2. From Jamie DeLoma, who teaches social media at Quinnipiac University:
    America lost an important voice this week. A strong voice. A wise voice. An experienced voice. America lost Mickey Carroll — and I lost a dear friend and a generous mentor.

    Mickey, whose storied journalism career spanned decades and included political reporting for The New York Times, was a fount of insight and a source of laughter.

    He played a key role in making the Quinnipiac Poll the internationally recognized pulse of American politics — and guided me through my career with patience, passion and persistence. I smile as I reflect on the years of advice he’s shared with me. He had an uncanny sense of humor — a staple in New York City’s storied Inner Circle.

    His legacy as a journalist, a historian and as an educator will be honored for generations — through my work as well as that of my peers and the institutions he helped build and strengthen. At a time when journalism and strong communications is paramount to our democracy’s future, he laid a strong foundation for on which it to stand.

    Mickey, I miss you already — but am grateful you found me worthy to nurture and guide. You will never be forgotten.

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