Not since New York City mayor Fiorello LaGuardia had there been a mayor like Ed Koch. When you think of New York City, three-term Mayor Ed Koch comes to mind. His name and memories live with many New Yorkers. In recent years, Ed Koch was an active media spokesman and was always consulted regarding New York City affairs by other media professionals.
As Mayor, Koch was known for his phrase, “How am I doing?”
Born in New York City, December 12, 1924, Ed Koch left college to serve in the Army during WWII. He returned to the City College of New York and New York University, where he earned his law degree. He was elected to the City Council in 1967, and Congress in 1969. A Democrat, Koch was mayor of New York City from 1978 to 1990, and is largely credited with saving the city from bankruptcy.
Defeated as Democratic candidate for mayor in 1989, he returned to practice law. A colorful and outspoken character, he also found a place in the news media as a TV talk show host and newspaper columnist.
I remember sitting at a restaurant many years ago. Suddenly Ed Koch and his entourage walked in and everyone looked up at him. I called out and asked him, “How are we doing?” He smiled, and said, “Better than ever.”
Ed Koch is now a memory. His future rests elsewhere. New York City is better from having him as Mayor of our city. They were the best of times, and the worst of times. When I remember Ed Koch, I remember the best of him and the world’s best city.