60 Minutes Producer Katy Textor Dies at 45

By A.J. Katz Comment

The CBS News family has experienced a stunning loss.

Katy Textor, a producer on 60 Minutes, died on Friday. She was only 45 years old.

Textor, best known for her work with the late Morley Safer on nearly all of his 60 Minutes reports over his last years on the newsmagazine, leaves behind her husband Colin Farmer and their children, Riley and Will.

“Katy Textor was a scrupulous journalist and a wonderful storyteller. Her energy and personality will be impossible to replace at 60 Minutes,” 60 Minutes ep Bill Owens said in a statement.

Tanya Simon, executive editor of 60 Minutes added: “Katy fought a courageous battle over the last two and a half years but her tenacity didn’t surprise those of us who knew her at 60 Minutes. We saw it in her work and in her friendships — she was whip-smart with a megawatt smile and a fierce sense of loyalty, warmth and compassion.”

Textor continued to work throughout her illness, producing stories for other correspondents that included the first TVinterview with the whistleblower who exposed the Theranos blood-testing machine fraud and an insightful story about the Syrian refugee crisis.

Over a 12-year period working with Safer, she produced profiles, features and investigations. The biggest news-maker among those stories was the much-anticipated first interview with Ruth Madoff in 2011. Nearly 19 million people watched the wife of Ponzi schemer Bernie Madoff tell Safer she knew nothing about her husband’s long and elaborate multi-billion-dollar fraud. As Textor looked on in the interview, Madoff said she and her husband attempted suicide with medications.

Textor investigated murder charges brought against a doctor trying to treat elderly and acutely ill patients for days without electricity in the sweltering aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. Dr. Anna Pou, accused of administering lethal injections, denied the charges when she spoke for the first time in the story that raised questions of medical ethics and human compassion.

A Seattle native and UPenn alum, Textor came to CBS News in 2003 from ABC News, where she was a White House producer, political reporter on the Bush-Gore 2000 presidential race and worked for the documentary unit. She began working with Safer at 60 Minutes in 2004.

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