Last Updated on September 23, 2023, 9:00 am
Carmel Cafiero, WSVN-TV investigative reporter, passed away at 75 on Friday, September 22, 2023. She was a fierce journalist who was relentless in her quest to expose the truth. She was well known for her cutting-edge investigative practices.
Who was Carmel Cafiero?
Carmel Cafiero was an investigative reporter for WSVN-TV in Florida. Her decorated career in journalism spans over four decades. WVSN is a news television station affiliated with Fox and based in Miami, Florida.
She was a native of New Orleans and, began her career in journalism and became the first female to anchor an evening newscast in Louisiana. In 1973, she joined Channel 7 in South Florida and became the first female journalist at the station.
Her daring and tenacious reporting brought many to justice and saved many lives. Her fearless investigative journalism serves as a standard and inspiration to new journalists. She withheld no questions and sought the truth in the most challenging settings.
She won many accolades and prestigious awards for her dedication to journalism, including nine Emmys, two George Foster Peabody, and a Sigma Delta Chi Distinguished Service Award.
She won one the most prestigious awards in the journalism world, the Alfred I. DuPont Columbia Award in 2010 for her series’ Pill Mills’, which exposed clinics for their involvement in millions of highly addictive prescription painkillers finding their way into the hands of the public, giving rising numbers of drug addiction and overdose cases.
In an interview with the news, Broward County Sheriff Al Lamberti said, “It was a scourge on our community. Seven Floridians a day were dying from overdose.”
She confronted the clinic owner and asked him, “We have pictures of people snorting, shooting up in the parking lot after coming out of your clinic. I mean, what do you have to say about what’s going on here?” to which the clinic owner replied, ” I don’t think you’re right,” as it turned out, she was right. Some clinic owners and doctors were prosecuted and punished.
In her entire 43-year career, Carmel asked the most challenging questions and pursued the truth no matter what. Her ceaseless efforts in the pursuit of truth and transparency were admirable.
She retired from journalism in June 2016 after a 43-year-long decorated career. Her death has wrapped the entire community she served in her life in a wave of grief. She is survived by Bob, Courtney, and her daughters Mariah and Malanie.
She made a massive impact on the community. She touched many lives and mentored many young talents in her days. She was a warm, kind, and considerate individual. Everyone who had the privilege to know her was touched by her unweaving support. The community mourns the death of their beloved anchor. Many paid her tribute on social media.
Cheryl Schechter Luckman-Simmons wrote on social media,
“I’ve written so many scripts with and for her over the years – yet it’s so hard to find the right words today. She took me under her wing when I was still in college – and I eventually became her producer. We shared happy times and tragedies together”, she continued, “She will be so missed and never ever forgotten. Love you always, Carmel Mel Cafiero.”
Sandy Baptiste wrote,
“She helped me with a case I had and got results for me… she truly loved her job and her community. Rest in peace… my condolences to her family and friends.”
Justin Schmachtenberg wrote,
“So sad to see one of my favourite Reporters go. I send my condolences to Carmel Cafiero’s family so sorry for your loss. She will be missed.”
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