James Barrett "Scotty" Reston, 1909 - 1995

portrait of James Reston
Time Magazine cover for 15 February 1960

Born: 3 November 1909, Clydebank, Dumbartonshire, Scotland
Died: 6 December 1995, Washington City

The devout Scottish-Presbyterian family emigrated to the US in 1920 and settled at Dayton, Ohio. Reston was more interested in golf than school and was Ohio High School Golf Champion in 1927. He graduated from the University of Illinois where he met Sarah Jane Fulton, they married in 1935. Caddying for the James Cox, governor of Ohio and publisher of the Dayton Daily News, gained him a job at Cox's Springfield Daily News where he covered sports for a year. He worked as a publicist for Ohio State University athletic department, then was press agent for the Cincinnati Reds. Reston went to work for the Associated Press for two years, first at New York City and then covered the London Blitz. The New York Times noticed his work and hired him for their London office. Reston took a leave to establish the US Office of War Information at London, he returned to the Times at the end of the war and spent the rest of his career at that paper's Washington bureau. He was appointed diplomatic correspondent in 1948, columnist in 1953, associate editor in 1964, executive editor in 1968, and vice president from 1969 to 1974. He continued his column until 1989. Reston won two Pulitzers (1945 and 1957), the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1986), and the Four Freedoms Award (Speech, 1991). He also was made a chevalier of the Légion d'honneur by France, was awarded the Order of St Olav by Norway, the Order of Merit by Chile,the Order of Leopold by Belgium, and received honorary degrees from 28 universities. His columns were erudite, well reasoned, and insightful, but it was sometimes apparent that his close relationships with various newsmakers was entirely too cozy, notably his ties to Henry Kissinger, despite maintaining a position on Nixon's "master list of political opponents". He has been credited with creating the op-ed section of modern newspapers, and his column relating his experience following an appendectomy at Beijing in 1971 introduced Americans to acupuncture. "Scotty" Reston succumbed to bone cancer at age 86.

Biography from Wikipedia and Ohioana Authors

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