Cokie Roberts dead: Emmy-award winning journalist dies aged 75

Cokie Roberts died in Washington due to complications from breast cancer. Her family have since confirmed the news of the ABC’s journalist’s death. In a statement they said: “We will miss Cokie beyond measure, both for her contributions and for her love and kindness.” Former US President Barack Obama led the tributes to the three-time Emmy winner who led ABC’s politics coverage for over 30 years.

In an official statement on behalf of Barack and the former First Lady Michelle Obama, they said: “She was a trailblazing figure; a role model to young women at a time when the profession was still dominated by men; a constant over forty years of a shifting media landscape and changing world, informing voters about the issues of our time and mentoring young journalists every step of the way.

“She will be missed – and we send our condolences to her family.”

ABC News president James Goldston also paid tribute, saying: “She will be dearly missed.

“Cokie’s kindness, generosity, sharp intellect and thoughtful take on the big issues of the day made ABC a better place and all of us better journalists,” he said.

Current ABC News political reporter Jonathan Karl recalled being in awe of Cokie when he first started working at the network.

“When I think of politics, I think of Cokie Roberts,” he said.

The commentator joined ABC in 1988 after two decades at CBS, PBS, and NPR.

Her death comes just weeks after she released a statement about her health after she worried fans with her “frail” appearance on ABC.

She said: “Over the summer, I have had some health issues which required treatment that caused weight loss. I am doing fine,” she said in a statement after the “This Week” appearance.

“I very much appreciate the kind comments I have received and expect to be, as I have been, working away in the days and months to come, covering what promises to be a fascinating election.

“I am grateful to everyone who has been in touch and sent their well wishes. Thanks for caring.”

Cokie was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2002 but continued her work in journalism.

Over the course of her career, she wrote six books and was awarded 30 honorary degrees over her 40 years working in TV, radio and publishing.

She also co-wrote a political column alongside her husband of 53 years, Steve Roberts.

Cokie is survived by the couple’s two children Lee and Rebecca, and six grandchildren.