I had another example this week of how being a member of the Nebraska and National Federation of Press Women has enriched my life.

Those of you who attended the 2011 Iowa-Nebraska conference in Council Bluffs may remember that the Nebraska members had a separate lunch at which we inducted the first six members into the Marian Andersen Nebraska Women Journalists Hall of Fame located at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

The goal, for which former Omaha World-Herald Publisher Harold Andersen and his wife provided an endowment, is to recognize the many women journalists with Nebraska ties whose outstanding accomplishments were either ignored or are little known.

Much of that void was filled when Creighton University journalism teacher Eileen Wirth, an OWH reporter in the days when women still worked in a separate area of the editorial department, wrote “From Society Page to Front Page Nebraska Women in Journalism.”

She told stories about many incredible women journalists. I had the opportunity to meet one of them Monday.

One of our 2015 Hall of Fame inductees is Beverly Deepe Keever, a south-central Nebraska farm girl who became fascinated with China after reading Pearl Buck’s “The Good Earth” and dreamed about traveling the world.

After earning degrees in journalism from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and Columbia University, she set off for China. When she reached Vietnam, planning to stay just two weeks, she found out no Americans were being allowed into China.

That’s how Deepe’s career as a foreign correspondent and longest serving western journalist covering the Vietnam War was born. She reported for Newsweek, New York Herald Tribune, two London newspapers and the Christian Science Monitor, which nominated her for a Pulitzer Prize.


She lives in Hawaii where she taught journalism at the University of Hawaii for 29 years.

NPW members hoped that Deepe could come to our April 25 spring convention in Lexington to attend the official 2015 Hall of Fame induction program. Several of us also saw great potential in having her speak to us and to area college and high school students.

Four of us did hear her amazing stories about covering Vietnam on Monday afternoon at the assisted living facility in Hebron where her mother lives. Deepe was there to celebrate her mother’s 100th birthday, which obviously was more important than coming to the NPW meeting in April.

So it was special when NPW Vice-President and Hall of Fame Director Cheryl Alberts Irwin of Lincoln presented Deepe with her HOF plaque in front of Deepe’s mother, and many other Nebraska friends and relatives that had packed to the room to hear her speak.

I have a short video interview with Deepe to show at the NPW convention.