CHESTER -- Morley Safer was a legend in the journalism world, but at his second home in Chester, Safer was the friendly face seen around town.
Safer died at the age of 84 on Thursday, one week after announcing his retirement. He will be sorely missed by residents of the small Connecticut town.
"He was a great customer. He would always come in, he was very calm, kinda reserved, doesn’t really like to be in the limelight a lot but he really loved the food, praised us and we really enjoyed having him here," said Joseph Roberto, a sous chef at The Good Elephant restaurant on Main street. "You know you don’t really think about it until it actually happens but you always look at the good times that you had with him."
Safer and his wife owned a home in town and were often seen taking in the sights but keeping a low and friendly profile.
"He was a pretty quiet, soft-spoken guy," said Ted Tine, owner of Ted Tine's Motorsports next door to Safer's home. "He was over here several times. He’s come by with his Ferrari, he’s come by for his dog. He’s come by for wrenches, battery chargers miscellaneous tools, advice. He was a nice guy."
Safer was the longest-serving correspondent in “60 Minutes” history. He joined the CBS program in 1970, just two years after it launched, and worked there ever since, contributing 919 reports over the years. He filed his last report in March.
CBS announced Safer’s retirement last week and televised a special hour-long retrospective about his career on Sunday. The timing of the announcement was partly due to Safer’s poor health.
"It’s a shame," said Tine. "The good die young."
Additional reporting by CNN.