The Washington Post’s Howard Kurtz interviews fellow CNNer Jack Cafferty…
“If I was going to write a book reflecting what I am,” he says in an interview, “I owed it to people to provide some context about me. It was a little bit painful to go back and go through it, but I had to do it. Some of the things I say are a little out there.” Cafferty says his background helps explain his constant challenges to authority.
After breaking into television on a Reno station as “Ranger Jack” on a kids’ show, the college dropout found his first marriage collapsing, in part under the weight of his hard drinking. That continued during Cafferty’s second marriage and during his days as a New York anchor. “I never went on as a stumbling, bumbling, slurring drunk, but I did a lot of shows with alcohol in my system,” he says.
Cafferty says he realized in 1989 that “if I didn’t make changes, I would be jeopardizing my marriage, and I didn’t want to challenge my old man’s record. He and my mother had 11 marriages between them, and it would have been 12 if he hadn’t killed one” — a fiancee who died in a car accident while he was driving drunk.