Alan Colmes, Fox News' liberal voice, dead at 66

Alan Colmes, the longtime radio host best known as Fox News's liberal voice on the network's popular "Hannity & Colmes" show and later as a Fox commentator, has died at the age of 66 after a brief illness, Fox News reported Thursday morning. "When...

Alan Colmes, Fox News' liberal voice, dead at 66

Alan Colmes, the longtime radio host best known as Fox News's liberal voice on the network's popular "Hannity & Colmes" show and later as a Fox commentator, has died at the age of 66 after a brief illness, Fox News reported Thursday morning.

"When Alan and I started 'Hannity & Colmes,' there wasn't a day that went by where we didn't say we were the two most fortunate men in all of television," his former co-host Sean Hannity tells the network of his longtime friend. "Alan, in the midst of great sickness and illness, showed the single greatest amount of courage I've ever seen."

Colmes, a New York native and Hofstra University graduate, started as a stand-up comedian before moving into radio, working at WNBC and WABC before Fox News CEO Roger Ailes hired him to help launch the network in 1996. For 12 years, he and the conservative Hannity clashed nightly; Holmes left the show in 2008 but continued to appear on Fox News and hosted his own nationally syndicated late-night talk radio show, "The Alan Colmes Show."

A Greenwich Village resident, Colmes was the author of two books, "Red, White & Liberal: How Left Is Right & Right Is Wrong" and "Thank The Liberals: For Saving America."

Colmes was married to Jocelyn Elise Crowley, a public policy professor at Rutgers University who was introduced to Colmes by her sister, CNN commentator Monica Crowley. His family released a statement to Fox News, calling Colmes "a great guy, brilliant, hysterical, and moral. He was fiercely loyal, and the only thing he loved more than his work was his life with Jocelyn. He will be missed. The family has asked for privacy during this very difficult time."

This is the second death in the Fox News family this week. On Monday, financial journalist Brenda Buttner, the host of "Bulls & Bears," died after a long battle with cancer. She was 55.

Vicki Hyman may be reached at vhyman@njadvancemedia.com. Follow her on Twitter @vickihy or like her on Facebook. Find NJ.com/Entertainment on Facebook, and check out Remote Possibilities, the TV podcast from Vicki Hyman and co-host Erin Medley on iTunes, Stitcher or Spreaker, or listen below or here.

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