Brothers Tom, right, and Ray Magliozzi in Cambridge, Mass., in 2008. (Charles Krupa/Associated Press file)
Tom Magliozzi, who hosted the long-running public radio show “Car Talk” with his brother Ray, has died, NPR announced Monday. Magliozzi — the older half of “Click and Clack the Tappet Brothers” — was 77.
The radio host died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease, according to NPR. In a statement announcing his brother’s death, Ray said: “Turns out he wasn’t kidding. He really couldn’t remember last week’s puzzler.”
That humor is characteristic of the popular, Peabody Award-winning show, which first aired 37 years ago. During the hour-long weekly program, the brothers helped callers with their car problems.
But that was just the show’s framing, not its heart. Ray and Tom’s fans came back, week after week, for the brothers’ banter, what “Car Talk’s” statement called a “uniquely Boston-Italian style of expressing affection through friendly insults and teasing.”
The show was full of personalities: the callers, the brothers, and the cars – often clunkers – themselves.