RIO DE JANEIRO – Journalist, writer and poet Armando Nogueira, an icon of Brazilian journalism, died in Rio de Janeiro after battling brain cancer since 2007, his family said. He was 83.
Nogueira died Monday in his apartment and a vigil was held for him in the legendary Maracana Stadium, the scene of hundreds of his sports stories.
He will be interred Tuesday in the Sao Joao Batista Cemetery in Botafogo, the neighborhood that gave his beloved soccer team its name.
The family said that the last time the journalist visited Maracana was on March 30, 2008, when during a tribute to him the “Nogueira Space” was inaugurated, exactly two years before the date of his funeral.
Nogueira, a lawyer by profession, was the creator of the National Journal, Brazil’s leading news program that he directed for 24 years until 1990.
Since the 1960s he alternated between his activities as a director and his work as a sports commentator, which led him to cover World Cup soccer matches and the Olympic Games.
President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva issued a statement in which he describe Nogueira as “one of the outstanding names in Brazilian journalism, especially on television,” a medium in which he was one of the creators of the National Journal, the country’s leading news program that aired on the Globo network.
“He had so much talent he could perform in different media, always with the same brilliance and the same concern for the quality of text and content. In this moment of loss, I wish to express my feelings of sorrow to his family, friends, colleagues of the press and admirers,” Lula said.
The governor of Rio de Janeiro state, Sergio Cabral, and the mayor of the like-named state capital, Eduardo Paes, proclaimed three days of mourning for the passing of Nogueira, who set a precedent on local television by bringing poetry to broadcasts and sports programs.
Nogueira covered soccer’s 1950 World Cup in Brazil and the 1980 Olympic Games from Moscow in 1980.
He had a program of interviews on the pay-TV channel SporTV, and was a commentator on Radio CBN, both belonging to the Globo network.
His literary production originated the documentary “Pele Eterno” (Pele Forever) in 2004 and 10 books, including “O Canto dos Meus Amores” (Song of My Loves), “Na Grande Area” (In the Big Area), “Bola na Rede” (Ball in the Net), “O Homem e a Bola” (The Man and the Ball), “Bola de Cristal” (Crystal Ball) and “A Copa que Ninguem Viu e a que Nao Queremos Lembrar” (The World Cup that No One Saw and We Don’t Want to Remember). EFE