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Ruth Ashton Taylor, trailblazing CBS journalist and first female newscaster on West Coast, dies at 101

Remembering Ruth Ashton Taylor, trailblazing female journalist, dead at 101
Remembering Ruth Ashton Taylor, trailblazing female journalist, dead at 101 03:13

Former CBS anchor Ruth Ashton Taylor, who was the first female newscaster to work in television on the West Coast, has died at 101 years old, according to family. 

Taylor, who was born in Long Beach in 1922, had a career in radio and television news that spanned more than 50 years, earning her a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and a Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award. 

The trailblazing journalist made history when she accepted a position to anchor for CBS Los Angeles in 1951, when the station was known as KNXT. 

She graduated from Long Beach Polytechnic High School before receiving her degree from Scripps College in Claremont and then Columbia University with a master's degree in journalism, signaling the official beginning of her historic career. 

"The most important thing that happened to me in the early part of my life was when Ed Murrow gave me an opportunity to do a documentary," Ashton Taylor said while speaking with Pat Harvey in 2008, recounting the moment that she became the only female member of Murrow's documentary team in New York. 

She was hired by KNXT to cover "The Woman's Angle," but in reality turned that opportunity into coverage that included features and interviews with celebrities and presidents. 

Ashton Taylor left the station for a brief time in 1958, but returned in 1962 for "The Ruth and Pat Show," which she co-hosted with comedian Pat Buttram for about a year. 

Her lasting influence is clearly apparent by the vast amount of incredible female journalists that drew from her career as inspiration. 

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