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Home » Investigative Journalist Drew Griffin, Whose Reporting Prompted VA Secretary Resignation, Dies at 60

Investigative Journalist Drew Griffin, Whose Reporting Prompted VA Secretary Resignation, Dies at 60

20 December 2022, Tuesday
Drew Griffin, an investigative journalist whose reporting for CNN on delayed care at Veterans Affairs hospitals led to the resignation of the secretary of the department, passed away on Saturday at his home in the Atlanta vicinity. He was 60.

Chris Licht, CNN's chief executive, informed staff members regarding his death on Monday via email. Although the cause was not disclosed, it is known that he had cancer.

"The loss of Drew is a huge blow to CNN and our entire profession," said Mr. Licht. "His work had a tremendous effect and embodied the organization's mission in every sense. He was passionate about uncovering the truth and holding the powerful accountable."

Mr. Griffin joined CNN in May 2004. Through this time, he reported on a variety of matters, such as Uber drivers being accused of sexual assault, Trump University's alleged fraud during Donald J. Trump's 2016 presidential campaign, and the aftermath of the 2021 assault on the U.S. Capitol. The Department of Justice mentioned his work on the Capitol assault in their court filings, according to CNN.

Mr. Licht remarked that Mr. Griffin was still conducting an inquiry on the day of his passing.

In January 2014, he lead an inquiry team of the deaths of no less than 19 military veterans that had been delayed in seeing a doctor at Veterans Affairs hospitals. Thousands more veterans were having the same problem.

Following the CNN report, Eric Shinseki was forced to resign from the Department of Veterans Affairs, and other department officials were let go.

President Obama declared that “we don’t have time for distractions,” and emphasized the need to “fix the problem.”

CNN was given a Peabody Award and an Edward R. Murrow Award in 2014 for their report.
Andrew Charles Griffin, an award-winning journalist for CNN's investigative unit, passed away on Saturday at the age of 57.

Griffin was the recipient of numerous accolades for the investigative stories he worked on, including a National Press Foundation Award in 2007 and Emmy Awards in 2005, 2006 and 2007, according to CNN. He also won a Peabody Award in 2018 for an investigation into politicians and bureaucrats who delayed projects that were essential to improve safety at the nation’s nuclear weapons complexes.

"Our goal in this reporting wasn’t just to shed light on this problem,” said Griffin when accepting the Peabody Award. “We wanted to effect change, to hold these politicians and bureaucrats responsible.”

In 2017, Griffin volunteered to report on Hurricane Harvey from Beaumont, Texas, where he and a photojournalist heroically saved a man from his truck as it sunk into floodwater. The dramatic rescue was also broadcast live.

Andrew Charles Griffin was born on October 21, 1962 to Michael James Griffin and Judith Anne Griffin. His father was an Army veteran who worked as a civil engineer with the Cook County, Ill., Highway Department, and his mother was a lawyer.

Mr. Griffin began his career in journalism as a reporter and cameraman at WICD-TV in Champaign, Ill. after receiving his bachelor’s in communications from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He then went on to work in numerous other states, and in 1994, joined CBS 2 News in Los Angeles as a reporter and anchor. He was also part of the creation of an investigative reporting team.

Mr. Griffin was a dedicated journalist, and even reported from New York City to cover the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He earned local awards for his investigative reporting, and was highly respected in the journalism industry.
He leaves behind his wife, Margot; his three children, Ele, Louis and Miles; his brothers Peter and Michael; and two grandchildren.

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