*Tony Cornelius, who worked alongside his father Don Cornelius on “Soul Train” and other shows, said his father placed a call to him on the day he died, reports CBS News.
Tony did not elaborate on the conversation, but said, “It was a call of urgency, and I came to his home immediately.”
Cornelius said his father was a private person and was “unhappy about some things” in his life. His father’s health, also, he said, was failing.
“My father was extremely private and unfortunately, when you’re a private person, you keep things inside,” Cornelius told Gayle King on “CBS This Morning.” “You know, it’s hard to imagine that you would — how you feel. You have to be in a person’s shoes really to understand. Obviously, me being extremely close to him, I could tell that he was uncomfortable. But our family could never know that he would — how uncomfortable he really was.”
Cornelius said his father would want to be remembered as someone who worked hard at being a professional.
“He taught me everything I know about TV production and he just really wanted to serve,” he said. “(My father) wanted to make a statement. I think he really worked extremely hard to make sure that he presented a project that people could really enjoy. … I think his legacy would be that he really worked on the fine points. I mean, he’s always taught me about it’s the fine points that count and he wanted to achieve quality. He wanted to expose the masses to a new way of looking at black-oriented television. And he just worked really hard to make that happen.”