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Parents of slain reporter Daniel Pearl appear on TV

The Associated Press
Tuesday June 25, 2002

LOS ANGELES — Slain Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl left behind a legacy of truth and compassion that was enough to fill with pride anyone who ever came in contact with him, his parents said Monday night in their first interview since his death. 

Pearl’s father, Judea, and his mother, Ruth, made their remarks on CNN’s “Larry King Live,” where they also discussed a book of Pearl’s Journal stories they are bringing out and a foundation being created to honor his memory. 

The 38-year-old South Asia bureau chief for The Wall Street Journal disappeared Jan. 23 in the port city of Karachi, Pakistan, while researching links between Pakistani militants and shoe-bombing suspect Richard C. Reid. A grisly videotape received Feb. 22 by U.S. diplomats in Karachi showed Pearl dead. 

Three things summed up Pearl’s personality, his father, Judea Pearl, told King: “Truth, compassion and creativity.” 

He added that he was not surprised by the public attention given to his son’s murder and kidnapping. 

“There were two factors here. One, he was a unique individual. And second, the circumstances under which he died were a sort of magnifying glass to amplify Danny and his character. Put the two factors together and I’m not surprised that the public is so moved,” said Pearl, a professor of computer science at the University of California, Los Angeles. 

Trial began in April in Hyderabad, Pakistan, for four men accused of playing a role in Pearl’s kidnapping and murder. Besides the men on trial, police are seeking seven others in connection with the kidnap and killing.