Charles Krauthammer, the famed columnist who died several weeks after he tragically and movingly announced that the end was near, leaves behind a wife of decades and the couple’s only child, a son named Daniel. He comes from a fascinating and accomplished family that survived the horrors of World War II.
Krauthammer, 68, penned an article on June 8, 2018, in which he revealed that he has cancer and is not expected to live more than a few weeks. The announcement came in a “note to readers” in The Washington Post. “I have been uncharacteristically silent these past ten months. I had thought that silence would soon be coming to an end, but I’m afraid I must tell you now that fate has decided on a different course for me,” Krauthammer wrote. The commentator died on June 21, 2018.
Fox News, where he was a commentator, released a statement. “We are deeply saddened by the loss of our colleague and friend, Charles Krauthammer. A gifted doctor and brilliant political commentator, Charles was a guiding voice throughout his time with FOX News and we were incredibly fortunate to showcase his extraordinary talent on our programs. He was an inspiration to all of us and will be greatly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his beloved wife Robyn and his son Daniel.”
Here’s what you need to know about Charles Krauthammer’s family:
1. Charles Krauthammer Has Been Married to a Former Lawyer Since the 1970s
Charles Krauthammer’s wife is named Robyn Krauthammer. In an interview with C-Span, Krauthammer said he was attending Balliol College at Oxford when he met his future wife. “…it had a graduate dormitory, which in 1970, when I was there, was the only one in town that was coed, that was its highest distinction. And that’s where I met my wife who was a student at St. Anne’s,” he explained.
Charles said that his wife was a lawyer but she gave that job up. “She was studying law. She practiced law for a while. And then in July of 1978, I quit medicine and she quit law on the same day. And she has been an artist, a painter and sculptor ever since,” he told C-Span in the 2005 interview.
As is well known, Krauthammer has been in a wheelchair most of his life. That occurred when he was 22 and in medical school, and Krauthammer was in a diving accident that resulted in a broken neck, according to The Washington Post. The Post reports that the Krauthammers weren’t married yet when the accident occurred, but it didn’t deter their relationship. His wife, who was born in Australia, began writing to him and then came to see him, sparking their relationship, which has lasted decades. They married in 1974.
2. The Couple Has a Son, Daniel, Together
Robyn and Charles Krauthammer have one son together. His name is Daniel Krauthammer.
Like his father, Daniel is very well-educated and is a writer. According to his LinkedIn page, Daniel Krauthammer is involved in “technology, strategy & policy” in the San Francisco Bay area. He has degrees from Stanford University Graduate School of Business; in Financial Economics from Oxford University; and in Social Studies from Harvard University.
He lists himself as an independent writer and producer, as a contributing writer in economics, finance, and world affairs, and as VP of Business Operations for Radpad, and he was previously employed in Product Management and Analysis for Google Ideas. Daniel also worked an an economic policy analyst on the 2008 John McCain presidential campaign. He has written for the Weekly Standard.
You can learn more about Daniel Krauthammer here:
3. Krauthammer’s Father Was a Lawyer Who Spoke Nine Languages & Fought With the French Army During WW2
In the interview with C-Span, Krauthammer also opened up about his parents. At that time, in 2005, his mother was still alive but his father was not.
“It’s a rather epic story, my father was originally from Ukraine but he lived in France most of his life,” said Krauthammer of his dad. “A naturalized Frenchman… he went to law school there, was a lawyer. During the war, World War II, he fought with the French army, you know that only lasted six weeks. Afterwards he went to Cuba and Brazil, back to France, America, where I born, and ultimately to Canada, where I grew up.”
Krauthammer told C-Span that his dad spoke nine languages and “by the real end of his life he was speaking them all at the same time. So …I would interpret on his behalf. Whenever he needed a word he would pull it out of any language he could find, even if his interlocutor had no idea what he was talking about. It was very charming.”
His dad was named Shulim Krauthammer. For a time, reports The Washington Post, he sold mushrooms throughout Europe and later went into real estate. Krauthammer is Jewish and from a Jewish family but has described himself as a religious skeptic.
4. Krauthammer’s Parents Met When His Father Was Selling Diamonds in Cuba
Charles Krauthammer’s parents definitely have a fascinating background. He also spoke about his mother during the C-Span interview, saying, “My dad at the time was running a diamond factory, which was producing industrial diamonds for the U.S. military. My mom was visiting her parents, who didn’t get into America, didn’t have a visa, but ended up in Cuba, as a lot of Jews did. And she met him at the Hotel Internacional and the rest is journalistic history and a lot of other history.”
He said that his mother was from Belgium but left that country on “May the 10th 1940, which is the day the Germans invaded, made her way through France, ended up in New York working for the Free French, translating American Army manuals into French for the Free French. Met my father in Cuba, long story, and she now lives in New York and in Miami.”
The Washington Post reported that Krauthammer was born in New York and “grew up in Montreal speaking French at home with a father of Austro-Hungarian birth and a Belgian-born Jewish mother.” The Post quoted the columnist as saying of his mom: “She was three steps ahead of the Nazis.”
5. Charles Krauthammer Had a Brother Named Marcel
Tragically, as with Charles Krauthammer, his only brother, Marcel, was a brilliant man who ended up with cancer. In a column, Charles wrote about Marcel: “He was a brilliant doctor, a professor of medicine at UCLA and a pulmonologist of unusual skill. But these diagnostic feats were performed lying flat on his back, near delirious and on the edge of circulatory collapse.”
Marcel, he explained, had cancer. He described how Marcel would help AIDS patients at a time when the disease was misunderstood and many doctors would not. He described him as “four years older and a magnificent athlete: good ballplayer, great sailor and the most elegant skier I’d ever seen.”
Marcel died in 2006. He was only 59.