Groundbreaking White House correspondent Helen Thomas dead at 92

10:18 pm | July 20, 2013

(AP) — Groundbreaking White House correspondent Helen Thomas died Saturday at age 92. Here are five important things to know about her:

1. SHE WAS AMONG THE FIRST WOMEN TO COVER HARD NEWS AT THE WHITE HOUSE

Her journalism career started in 1943, an era when female reporters were confined to stories about presidents’ kids, wives, their teas and their hairdos.

2. HER BIG BREAK CAME IN PALM BEACH IN 1960

She was sent by UPI to cover the vacation of President-elect John Kennedy and his family.

3. THE BARRIER SHE BROKE THROUGH IN 1974

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As United Press International’s White House bureau chief, she became the first woman in that role for a wire service.

4. THE DAY SHE WAS SCOOPED BY A FIRST LADY

It was Pat Nixon who announced Thomas was engaged to Douglas Cornell, chief White House correspondent for the archrival Associated Press. They married in 1971.

5. THE COMMENT ABOUT ISRAEL THAT ENDED HER CAREER IN 2010

“Tell them to get the hell out of Palestine,” she told a rabbi who was interviewing her. “Remember, these people are occupied and it’s their land. It’s not Germany, it’s not Poland.” She soon retired from her job as a Hearst columnist.

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