Denby Fawcett

Photo courtesy of KITV-4

By Catherine Cruz


Confidence propels her.

How else can you describe someone who went from a society page writer to war correspondent.

The year was 1966.

She asked her newspaper bosses to send her abroad to cover Vietnam.

They said "No."

Denby said goodbye to the high society scene and was cataputed to the front lines.

The Star Bulletin's loss was the Honolulu Advertiser's gain.

For the next year, Denby would file her war stories.

She sure showed them.

Now decades later, her experience as part of an exclusive club of female reporters during the Vietnam conflict is chronicled in a new Random House book.

"War Torn " is the title.

Guess who is the cover girl?.

The stories are more than just a compilations of what the women had to put up with and how they coped.

A section in Denby's chapter tells of her experience "walking point,"

She gives you the sense of what it was like foraging ahead in unknown territory with the rest of the pack behind you. I could imagine her steeling her nerves and moving ahead.

We all know Denby returned safely home.

She was lucky enough not to get her face blown off.

She went on to TV news.

These days she is walking point as a political reporter for KITV.

Sometimes she walks in very expensive designer shoes whose European names I can't pronounce.

Denby may not realize that every day she is out there pounding that pavement she is inspiring other jounalists to take their turn walking "point."

Denby Fawcett has certainly sloshed around in the trenches of serious journalism long enough that at the end of the day she can appreciate the adventure... along with a good chianti and a nice pair of shoes.

Hawaii SPJ