International Correspondent Barrie Dunsmore Dies At 79

Aug 27, 2018

Journalist Barrie Dunsmore was a familiar face to national television audiences for 30 years, covering international news for ABC. For seven years he served as the network’s senior foreign correspondent.

Dunsmore died Sunday at the age of 79.

He filed reports on many of the historic events of the last half of the 20th century, including the fall of South Vietnam, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Dunsmore reported most extensively from the Middle East, covering its wars and the changing fortunes of peace efforts there.

He was also a VPR commentator for a dozen years when he and his wife lived in Charlotte. Speaking at a 2014 commentator brunch, Dunsmore touched on how reporting from countries around the globe shaped his outlook:

"I have subscribed to the idea that every human being is unique. I have rejected the impulse to categorize people according to their race, religion, gender, economic status or sexual orientation ... But here is the dirty little secret that I discovered after spending much of my adult life living abroad while reporting from many of the countries of the world: human beings are remarkably similar."

In a statement, Sen. Patrick Leahy said Dunsmore "had a great sense of history, which too often is missing today."

"As Vermonters we have been enriched and enlightened, and sometimes challenged, by his perceptive commentaries, in which he shared his experience and his sharp insights," said Leahy.

Dunsmore, who was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, is survived by his wife Whitney Taylor and by his children Timothy, Leeanne and Campbell, in addition to four grandchildren. He is also survived by two brothers.

There will be a memorial service for Dunsmore on Saturday, Sept. 8, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the National Press Club, in Washington, D.C. The memorial will be livestreamed through the organization's website.

Update 5:30 p.m. This post was edited to add comments from Sen. Leahy.