Iconic US TV news anchorwoman Barbara Walters has died Friday at the age of 93 at her New York residence, it was reported. Walters won several Emmy Awards over her 50-year career.
Born on Sept. 25, 1929, in Boston, Massachusetts, in the midst of the Great Depression, she graduated from Sarah Lawrence College in 1953 and soon took a job writing for CBS’ morning program. In 1974, she became the first woman to ever host NBC’s “Today.”
She began working for ABC News in 1976 and became the first female anchor of one of America's great prime-time newscasts. At a time when male faces dominated television, she emerged as the leading female voice.
“Barbara Walters passed away peacefully in her home surrounded by loved ones. She lived her life with no regrets. She was a trailblazer not only for female journalists but for all women,” Cindi Berger, Walters’ agent, said in a statement.
Her US$ 1 million contract with ABC to co-anchor “The Evening News” made her the highest-paid TV journalist at the time and the first woman to ever anchor the evening news on a major network.
She began working as a correspondent for “20/20” in 1979 — ultimately becoming co-host alongside Hugh Downs in 1984. She remained a fixture on the late-night program for 25 years until she stepped down in 2004.
In 1997 she launched “The View,” a morning talk show featuring roundtable discussions on politics, entertainment, family, and other topics. After sitting at the table for 17 years, Walters stepped down from the show in 2014 but remained an executive producer.
Walters was married four times. “I don’t think that I was very good at marriage,” Walters explained in an ABC special about her life. “It may be that my career was just too important. It may have been that I was a difficult person to be married to, and I just seem to be better alone. I’m not lonely, I’m alone,” she once said.
On your deathbed, are you going to say, ‘I wish I spent more time in the office?’ No. You’ll say, ‘I wish I spent more time with my family,’ and I do feel that way, she said upon announcing her retirement.
How proud I am today when I see all the young women who are making and reporting the news today. If I did anything to help make that happen, that will be my legacy, Walters said in her last TV appearance in 2014.
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