Tributes paid to trailblazing investigative journalist from Hayling Island who covered Russia's invasion of Afghanistan

FROM covering a shipwreck off Hayling Island to Russian forces invading Afghanistan, Pearl Marshall led the life of an adventurous reporter – and her children have paid tribute to their ‘brilliant’ mum who has died at the age of 78.

Tuesday, 6th October 2020, 4:45 pm
Updated Wednesday, 7th October 2020, 1:58 pm

Pearl Marshall was born in 1942 and raised on Hayling Island, where she got her first scoop.

Her photograph of a ship being wrecked by a storm appeared in The Daily Mirror when she was aged just 15.

She went on to work as a reporter for the Portsmouth Evening News – as the paper was then calledbefore moving on to become the first women to be a full-time news reporter for the Sacramento Bee, one of California’s largest papers.

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Former Portsmouth Evening News journalist and international investigative reporter Pearl Marshall has died at the age of 78.

Her career led to travel around the world, including working in Germany, India, and Afghanistan as it was invaded by Russian forces in 1979.

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Her work covering the invasion for Time Magazine showed that she was ‘a rare reporter’ with a knack for getting to the heart of a story, according to her former husband, Tyler Marshall.

He said: ‘It's important to note she was one of the very first reporters who covered it from Kabul.

‘I can't remember how she got the visa to get in, but she did.

‘She was a rare reporter who was inside virtually from the start.

‘Hundreds of reporters were stranded for days in New Delhi waiting for visas and space on the few available flights into Kabul.’

After covering nuclear energy developments in India and London, Pearl moved to Godalming, Surrey, and retired in 2008.

She died after suffering cardiac arrest on Monday, September 28.

Pearl is survived by her three children and seven grandchildren, with her daughter Rosalie Marshall paying tribute to her mother for being both a trailblazing journalist and a ‘brilliant’ mum.

She said: ‘Somehow our mum managed to have a career while also being a brilliant mum.

‘It was sometimes tough getting time with her as she was always trying to file a story, but when you got the time, you always had her full attention and interest, and this is what sticks with me.

‘I’ve always felt this reassurance that no problem is too big as I always had someone to share it with who wanted to solve the problem as much as me.’

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