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Retired Dallas Morning News reporter dies in car crash

December 21, 2021 GMT
FILE - Wayne Slater, left, of The Dallas Morning News's Austin bureau, listens as George W. Bush responds to an answer during a 1997 availability in Austin, Texas. The retired Dallas Morning News Austin bureau chief and former The Associate Press reporter Slater, died Monday, Dec. 20, 2021, in an automobile accident in Williamson County. He was 74. (The Dallas Morning News via AP)
FILE - Wayne Slater, left, of The Dallas Morning News's Austin bureau, listens as George W. Bush responds to an answer during a 1997 availability in Austin, Texas. The retired Dallas Morning News Austin bureau chief and former The Associate Press reporter Slater, died Monday, Dec. 20, 2021, in an automobile accident in Williamson County. He was 74. (The Dallas Morning News via AP)
FILE - Wayne Slater, left, of The Dallas Morning News's Austin bureau, listens as George W. Bush responds to an answer during a 1997 availability in Austin, Texas. The retired Dallas Morning News Austin bureau chief and former The Associate Press reporter Slater, died Monday, Dec. 20, 2021, in an automobile accident in Williamson County. He was 74. (The Dallas Morning News via AP)
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FILE - Wayne Slater, left, of The Dallas Morning News's Austin bureau, listens as George W. Bush responds to an answer during a 1997 availability in Austin, Texas. The retired Dallas Morning News Austin bureau chief and former The Associate Press reporter Slater, died Monday, Dec. 20, 2021, in an automobile accident in Williamson County. He was 74. (The Dallas Morning News via AP)
1 of 3
FILE - Wayne Slater, left, of The Dallas Morning News's Austin bureau, listens as George W. Bush responds to an answer during a 1997 availability in Austin, Texas. The retired Dallas Morning News Austin bureau chief and former The Associate Press reporter Slater, died Monday, Dec. 20, 2021, in an automobile accident in Williamson County. He was 74. (The Dallas Morning News via AP)

DALLAS (AP) — Retired Dallas Morning News reporter Wayne Slater, who covered the rise of Texas governors Ann Richards and George W. Bush, has died in a car crash. He was 74.

Slater died Monday after his vehicle collided with a pickup, Texas Department of Public Safety Sgt. Deon Cockrell said Tuesday. It happened near Florence, the city north of Austin where Slater lived.

Robert Mong, a former editor-in-chief at the Dallas Morning News, told the newspaper that Slater “was relentless in going after a story.”

“He broke a lot of stories because people trusted him and liked talking to him,” Mong said.

In a statement to the newspaper Monday, former president Bush called Slater “a hard-working and insightful reporter.”

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Slater was born in Lubbock, Texas, and grew up in Parkersburg, West Virginia. He graduated from West Virginia University. From the early 1970s to the mid-1980s, Slater worked for The Associated Press in Charleston, West Virginia; Topeka, Kansas; Peoria, Illinois; and Denver.

But he is best remembered for his next stop: three decades in the Morning News’ Austin bureau, including as bureau chief. The newspaper reports that Slater retired in December 2014.

Slater also co-wrote two books about Bush adviser Karl Rove: “Bush’s Brain” and “The Architect.”