Veteran Reporter Robert Vance Pratt Dies at 79

Veteran reporter Robert Vance Pratt died Nov. 21, 2005 at the JFK Medical Center in Atlantis, Fla., following a brief illness.

Pratt, 79, had retired in April 1999 after 48 years as a newspaper and magazine reporter and editor and was living with his wife in Palm Beach County, Fla.

After graduating from University of California-Berkeley and American University, Pratt spent his first 22 years out of school in reporting and editing positions at the Alexandria (Va.) Gazette, The Daily Progress in Charlottesville, Va., the Evansville (Ind.) Courier, The Buffalo (N.Y.) Evening News, the Miami News, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the Louisville (Ky.) Times and Courier-Journal.

Pratt worked for the Daily Press three different times, twice as a reporter and finally as managing editor for seven years. At the Times and Courier-Journal, he served as executive assistant to the editor and publisher, moving on to work as a National Enquirer reporter for eight and a half years. He served the last 17 years of his career in computer-page design and production for the National Examiner, the Globe and the Sun.

Pratt also served in the U.S. Army Air Force in WWII.

Particularly during his time at the Enquirer, Pratt pursued his interest in UFOs through reporting and several books he authored (“”UFO Danger Zone: Terror and Death in Brazil-Where Next?””) and co-authored (“”Night Seige: The Hudson Valley UFO Sightings””). He also edited the Mutual UFO Network’s UFO Journal in 1983 and ’84.

“”He was the most level-headed person,”” said Faith Collins, Pratt’s wife since October 1955. She recalled her husband as “”such a dear person”” who “”loved newspapering,”” read The New York Times every day, and had initially been very skeptical of UFO reports until he began speaking with people in Brazil, where he traveled numerous times during his life.

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