February 9, 2015

Brian Williams is taking some time off from NBC Nightly News after several of his high-profile stories were exposed to be not entirely truthful. The newsman released a statement over the weekend explaining his decision.

Brian WIlliams NBC

Brian said, “In the midst of a career spent covering and consuming news, it has become painfully apparent to me that I am presently too much a part of the news, due to my actions. As managing editor of NBC Nightly News, I have decided to take myself off of my daily broadcast for the next several days, and Lester Holt has kindly agreed to sit in for me to allow us to adequately deal with this issue.”

It was revealed last week that his story about being on a helicopter that crash-landed while covering the war in Iraq in 2003 didn’t actually happen. A vet named Lance Reynolds wrote on the Nightly News Facebook page, “Sorry dude, I don’t remember you being on my aircraft. I do remember you walking up about an hour after we had landed to ask me what had happened. Then I remember you guys taking back off in a different flight of Chinooks from another unit and heading to Kuwait to report your “war story” to the Nightly News. The whole time we were still stuck in Iraq trying to repair the aircraft and pulling our own Security.”

The 55-year-old’s coverage of Hurricane Katrina is also being called into question over his claims that he got dysentery from drinking floodwater and saw dead bodies floating past his hotel in the French Quarter. The New Orleans Advocate pointed out over the weekend that the French Quarter wasn’t even flooded during the storm and that a health expert could not recall anyone suffering from dysentery.

Williams recently signed a contract with NBC to earn $2 million a year over the next five years for his coverage.