Liz Smith, Longtime Gossip Columnist, Dies at 94

Liz Smith, Longtime Gossip Columnist, Dies at 94

Famed gossip columnist Liz Smith died on Sunday, November 12, at the age of 94. In the 80s Smith befriended Donald Trump and his first wife, Ivana, even taking trips with them to Mar-a-Lago; when their marraige exploded in 1990, Smith chose Ivana's side, and got the scoops that followed, but she was always linked to them both. Three years later, during a newspaper strike in New York City, her editors at the Daily News asked her to appear in daily segments on WNBC's "Live at Five" newscast; she remained with the program for 11 years, earning an Emmy in 1985. "It's your legend. You don't have to agree with everything said about you, but you can't really quarrel with the cumulative thing". Though she had studied journalism, she recognized quickly that when writing about celebrities, principles sometimes mattered less when angling for the all-important exclusive.

She became friends with numerous celebrities she covered and was close with Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.

Her syndicated daily column moved over to Newsday and then also to the New York Post. "Liz passed away at the age of 94 and with her, a piece NY", said weather anchor Al Roker on Twitter.

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"We mustn't take ourselves too seriously in this world of gossip", Smith told the AP in 1987 about her career. She later wrote for Cosmopolitan and Sports Illustrated. When the paper folded, she joined the Post. She cared deeply about illiteracy and raised about $37 million for Literacy Partners, which reportedly helped 27,000 people learn to read.

Her tome "The Mother Book" was published in 1978, followed by her New York Times bestselling memoir "Natural Blonde" in 2000 and 2005's "Dishing: Great Dish - And Dishes - From America's Most Beloved Gossip Columnist". "I didn't feel I had to do what he said".

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