Tom Magliozzi, half of Click and Clack on NPR’s Car Talk, the Tappet Brothers, died Monday of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. He was 77.
Magliozzi and his brother Ray hosted Car Talk for 37 years before it ended production in 2012. The show continues airing in reruns.
Doug Berman, the show’s producer, said in a blog post that Tom Magliozzi and his brother “changed public broadcasting forever.”
“Before Car Talk, NPR was formal, polite, cautious . . . even stiff,” Berman wrote. “By being entirely themselves, without pretense, Tom and Ray single-handedly changed that, and showed that real people are far more interesting than canned radio announcers. And every interesting show that has come after them owes them a debt of gratitude.”
With its timeless quality, Car Talk will continue to entertain in the years to come.
“I think the body of work he leaves will definitely be held up with great American humorists like the Marx Brothers and Mark Twain,” Berman wrote. “He was a genius. And he happened to use that genius to make other people feel good and laugh. I suspect, generations from now, people will be listening to Car Talk and feeling good and laughing.”