The former Austin bureau chief for the Dallas Morning News, known for his political reporting, Wayne Slater has died due to a fatal car crash. Slater, who was 74, co-wrote two books about George W. Bush adviser Karl Rove, died near Williamson County after his car swerved into an oncoming pickup truck.
He was driving his Mazda CX-3 subcompact SUV, when he swerved into an oncoming Ford F-150 pickup truck, injuring the driver from the truck. While Slater was pronounced dead on the scene, the other driver was taken to the hospital where he was treated for minor injuries.
Christy Hoppe, Slater’s successor as the Austin bureau chief and former reporter said, “He brought energy into work, into his writing. He had a great instinct for news. When everyone else was looking straight ahead, Wayne was looking around corners for what couldn’t be seen yet,” calling Wayne Slater a “whirling dervish of a man.”
The retired Dallas Morning News was a prominent news and politics writer, who was at the forefront of two of Texas governors’ prominence into national level politics and media. Wayne Slater last covered the election of current Gov. Greg Abbott (R-Texas), after which he retired as chief from Dallas Morning News in 2014 and continued his career as a professor of public affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.
George W. Bush gave a statement on his passing saying, “Wayne Slater was a hard-working and insightful reporter. He understood Texas politics better than most and contributed a lot to his field. Laura and I send our sympathy to Dianne.”
In a tweet remembering Wayne Slater, CNN’s John Berman wrote, “”We were punks. He was a prince.” Honoring a lovely man…@WayneSlater. May his memory be a blessing, “ also sharing a clip of himself reporting the incident saying, “Wayne and other members of the Texas press corp, they were our tour guides through the intricate world of Lone Star politics for a generation of young reporters. We were punks. Wayne was a prince.”
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