Speed Reads


Russell Baker, Pulitzer-winning author and columnist, dies at 93

Russell Baker, a journalist, humorist, and TV host, died Monday at 93. He died due to complications from a fall, his family tells The Associated Press.

Baker grew up in New Jersey and Baltimore and served in the U.S. Navy before begininng his career reporting at The Baltimore Sun. He transferred to the paper's London bureau at age 27, then came back to Washington, D.C. to work as a national reporter for The New York Times. He eventually got "bored with reporting," the Sun wrote in 1999, and at 37, launched a 36-year run as a columnist at the Times.

Writing more than 5,000 Observer columns, Baker won a 1979 Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary. His second Pulitzer came from his 1983 memoir Growing Up, among several other awards. He retired from column-writing in 1998, but continued to host PBS' Masterpiece Theater until 2004. One of Baker's three children, his son Allen Baker, told the Sun on Tuesday he "couldn't have asked for a better father." Read more about Baker's life at The New York Times.