Tom Magliozzi (above, right), the witty, upbeat, and beloved co-host of NPR’s Car Talk radio show, passed away on Monday from complications of Alzheimer’s disease. He was 77 years old. “Turns out he wasn’t kidding,” said his brother and fellow Car Talk host, Ray. “He really couldn’t remember last week’s puzzler.”
Collectively, the two were known as Click and Clack (the Tappert Brothers), who became famous — or perhaps infamous — for their hearty, occasionally car-related banter on National Public Radio on Saturday mornings. The pair built the show out of an almost accidental beginning (thanks to Tom) and turned it into a public radio tour de force that roped in car lovers and not-so-lovers alike. Car Talk was nationally broadcast from 1987 to 2012, and has since lived on as reruns.
Tom was perhaps best known for his quick wit and infectious laugh, as well as his commitment to not working. “Don’t be afraid of work. Make work afraid of you. I did such a fabulous job of making work afraid of me that it has avoided me my whole life so far,” he once said.
“The family asks that in lieu flowers, or rotten fruit, fans of Tom make a donation in his memory to either their local NPR station or the Alzheimer’s Association,” the Car Talk website said. You can also head over to NPR’s tribute to Tom and check out some of the station’s favorite Tom moments from the show.
And remember: “Don’t drive like my brother.”