Barbara Walters, broadcast news pioneer, dies at the age of 93

Barbara Walters broke barriers and inspired a generation, as the first female co-host of a morning and evening newscast.

Walters, who died at 93, ABC News announced Friday, began her onscreen TV career in 1961 on "The Today Show" as a glorified morning model called, without a trace of irony, "The Today Girl." She ended it more than 50 years later as one of television’s most influential and powerful people, male or female.

It wasn’t an easy road; there were bumps and detours aplenty. But each step she took made that road smoother for the women who followed.

You don’t make it to the end of that kind of trail without benefit of sizable amounts of ambition, tenacity, drive and competitive fire – this is, after all, the woman who practically invented the “big get” interview. Nor do you make it without creating a few rivals, friendly and decidedly otherwise, along the way.

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