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Original Fox News Anchor Uma Pemmaraju Dies At 64

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OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author's opinion.


Founding Fox News Channel anchor Uma Pemmaraju has died at age 64.

“Pemmaraju was on the air when Fox News launched on Oct. 7, 1996. At the time, Pemmaraju was one of the only Indian-American anchors to reach national prominence, and she was beloved by viewers and Fox News colleagues alike,” Fox News reported.

She anchored original shows on the network like “Fox News Now” and “Fox On Trends.”

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She left the network but rejoined in 2003 as an anchor. Pemmaraju also hosted the Sunday edition of “FOX News Live,” anchored “The Fox Report” and interviewed newsmakers, celebrities, and political figures.

“We are deeply saddened by the death of Uma Pemmaraju, who was one of FOX News Channel’s founding anchors and was on the air the day we launched. Uma was an incredibly talented journalist as well as a warm and lovely person, best known for her kindness to everyone she worked with. We extend our heartfelt condolences to her entire family,” FOX News Media CEO Suzanne Scott said.

“The award-winning anchor was born in India, raised in Texas, and honed her craft at local stations in Dallas, Baltimore, and WBZ-TV in Boston, before relocating to New York to help launch Fox News Channel. Her family told WBZ-TV’s David Wade she was a noble soul and pioneer. Pemmaraju was named “Boston’s Best Anchor” in 1996 and 1997 by Boston Magazine and received several Emmy awards throughout her career for reporting and investigative journalism. She was named one of Spotlight Magazine’s “20 Intriguing Women of 1998.” Pemmaraju also won the Texas AP award for reporting in 2002, the Woman of Achievement award from the Big Sisters Organization of America, and the Matrix Award from Women in Communications,” Fox News reported.

In a 1993 article, the Boston Globe said Pemmaraju arrived on Boston’s media scene “like a rocket with booster jets blazing.” She was dedicated to reporting stories about “the dispossessed, the indigent, the powerless,” the paper said.

“I’m a conduit to help other people. I don’t want to sound too sentimental. But that’s what I’m about,” Pemmaraju told the Globe. “I want to use my celebrity to help people, to help bring about something that needs to be done.”

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When not in front of the camera, Pemmaraju also taught journalism at Emerson College in Boston and at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

“Another sad passing for WBZ,” WBZ-TV anchor David Wade tweeted. “Former Channel 4 anchor and reporter Uma Pemmaraju has passed away. After leaving WBZ, she went on to be a national news anchor.

“Her family tells me she was a ‘noble soul and pioneer’ as an Indian Asian American newswoman of prominence. #WBZ,” he added.

Former Governor of Arkansas and Fox News contributor Mike Huckabee (R) reacted to news of the legendary anchor’s death in a touching post on Twitter.

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“I was so sad to hear,” Huckabee tweeted. “[Uma Pemmaraju] was a beautiful person inside & out. Talented and kind. A cherished friend.”

Many others weighed in on social media.

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