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Former Times foreign correspondent William Tuohy on the phone

December 31, 2009 |  5:49 pm


William Tuohy, the former longtime Los Angeles Times foreign correspondent who died Thursday at age 83, was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the Vietnam War.

Novelist Ward Just, who was a Washington Post foreign correspondent in Vietnam when he met Tuohy in the mid-1960s, recalls a visit he and his wife made to Tuohy years later in Germany, where he was then living.

"I knock on the door and can hear Bill's voice. He said, 'Come in, come in.' He's talking on the phone and puts his hand over the receiver and says, 'Get yourself a drink.' He's dictating to the L.A. Times. It was a story about the German beer industry.

"He was writing from his notes as he went along. I sat there listening to him. He's flipping pages back and forth, each sentence parsing perfectly. He'd say, 'New paragraph,' and he'd begin again. This went on for 20 minutes, reciting this thing from notes alone. I was in awe. It was really some performance. He was a complete newspaperman."

--Dennis McLellan

Photo: William Tuohy. Credit: Los Angeles Times