By Brian Williams, Anchor and managing editor
I have ample occasion -- several times daily, in fact -- to count my blessings in life and feel especially lucky that I get to do this for a living. Today, as I often do, I was listening to the FDNY Manhattan scanner on my office computer as I went about my work. I just heard a Batallion Chief ask for some "brief R&R" for his men after a particularly hot and smoky roof fire on the East Side. While I so miss serving in that capacity as a volunteer, I don't miss fires like the one they just fought. And now as I write this, they've been called away to dual alarms on the third and fifth floors of a Manhattan apartment building. No rest for the weary.
Another source of fortunate feelings today was the superb piece in this morning's New York Times by a colleague of ours over at ABC News, documentary producer Michael Bicks. It has to do with life and mortality and the loss of our friend Tim Russert. For us (as I know it is for Mr. Bicks and for many of you), the loss is incredibly fresh and urgent and raw -- like yesterday. That lessons have come from it tells us that Tim has had an impact beyond his life's work. This is about life itself.
We hope you can join us for tonight's broadcast.