Indian-born Fox News Channel host Uma Pemmaraju, who helped launch the channel in 1996, has died aged 64

Indian-born Fox News Channel host Uma Pemmaraju, who helped launch the channel in 1996, has died aged 64

Fox News Channel founding host Uma Pemmaraju, who was born in India and has interviewed everyone from the Dalai Lama to Donald Trump in her long broadcasting career, has died at the age of 64

  • Uma Pemmaraju, one of Fox News Channel’s original anchors, has died at the age of 64
  • Pemmaraju was on the air when Fox News launched on October 7, 1996
  • At the time, she was one of the few Indian-American anchors to achieve national notoriety and first anchored ‘Fox News Now’ and ‘Fox On Trends’
  • She left the network but returned in 2003 as an anchor and backup presenter

One of the founders of Fox News Channel, Uma Pemmaraju, has died at the age of 64.

Pemmaraju sat behind the anchor desk when the cable news channel launched in October 1996.

At the time, she was one of the few Indian-American news anchors to make it nationally.

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Uma Pemmaraju, who was one of the founding anchors of Fox News Channel and was on the air the day we launched.

Uma Pemmaraju, one of Fox News Channel’s first anchors in 1996, has died at the age of 64

Uma Pemmaraju is pictured to the right of her daughter Kirina Alana Devi

Uma Pemmaraju is pictured to the right of her daughter Kirina Alana Devi

‘Uma was an incredibly talented journalist as well as a warm and lovely person who is best known for her kindness to everyone she worked with. We send our deepest condolences to her entire family,” said Suzanne Scott, CEO of Fox News Media.

Pemmaraju’s first role at the news network was as the anchor of Fox News Now and Fox On Trends.

She subsequently left the network, but rejoined the channel in 2003 as a presenter for anchor casts.

Pemmaraju has also hosted other programs on the cable network, including Fox News Live and The Fox Report, which have interviewed many high-profile newsmakers, including the Dalai Lama.

Born in India but raised in San Antonio, Texas after moving there at the age of six, Pemmaraju honed her journalism skills at local television stations in Dallas, Baltimore and then WBZ Boston.

In Baltimore, she won an Emmy Award for reporting on the rescue of a nearly drowned child.

Pemmaraju learned her journalism skills at local TV stations in Dallas and then at WBZ Boston as pictured above

Pemmaraju learned her journalism skills at local TV stations in Dallas and then at WBZ Boston as pictured above

Uma Pemmaraju, left, is pictured alongside her daughter Kirina Alana Devi (centre).

Uma Pemmaraju, left, is pictured alongside her daughter Kirina Alana Devi (centre).

She then moved to New York to help launch Fox News Channel.

In a 1993 interview with the Boston Globe, Pemmaraju said she tried to focus her reporting on stories about those who were being disenfranchised.

“I am a channel to help other people. I don’t want to sound too sentimental. But that’s what I’m about. I want to use my fame to help people make a difference that needs to be done.”

A memorable moment occurred while working in Boston in 1990.

Just as she was getting ready to shoot a feature film in a supermarket, two masked men ran into the store and carried out a robbery.

“I’ve been sent to crime scenes before, but this was the first time one came to me,” she told the Boston Globe.

Her interest in journalism began at a young age. Her grandfather was a newspaper publisher, and as a child she kept a diary of world news she saw on television.

As a teenager and during college, she worked for a local newspaper and TV station.

Pemmaraju has received multiple Emmy Awards for reporting and investigative journalism throughout her career.

When she was not in front of the camera, she also taught journalism at Emerson College in Boston and Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The cause of death was not released.

In a 1993 interview with the Boston Globe, Pemmaraju said she tried to focus her reporting on stories about those who were being disenfranchised.  She is pictured at WBZ Boston

In a 1993 interview with the Boston Globe, Pemmaraju said she tried to focus her reporting on stories about those who were being disenfranchised. She is pictured at WBZ Boston