Longtime television personality Hugh Downs – known for his roles on news, game and talk shows – has passed away at the age of 99.

  • According to ABC News, Downs logged more than 15,000 hours on television, making him one of the most familiar faces on TV.
  • He died of natural causes in his home in Scottsdale, Arizona on Wednesday.
  • According to “The Guinness Book of World Records,” Downs held the record for most hours in front of the camera before Regis Philbin passed him in 2004.
  • Downs began his broadcasting career at 18 as an announcer on an Ohio radio station.
  • He co-hosted on ABC’s magazine show 20/20 with Barbra Walters, in addition to his work on NBC’s Today and Tonight shows and the game show Concentration.
  • Highlights of his more adventurous work on 20/20 include a ride on the back of a killer whale, a swim with a great white shark and a hazardous expedition to the South Pole.
  • Downs also served as the host of NBC’s Today show for nine years.