March 1, 2004 by

Sandra Burton

3 comments

Categories: Media, Writers/Editors

Sandra J. Burton, one of the first women to become a correspondent for Time Magazine, died on Feb. 27. Cause of death was not released. She was 62.

Burton graduated from Middlebury College and joined Time as a library “clip girl” in 1964. During the 1970s, she rose through the magazine’s ranks, working as a correspondent in Los Angeles and Paris and as the Boston bureau chief. Burton became the Hong Kong bureau chief in 1982, and made a name for herself covering southeast Asia.

In 1983, Burton was flying with opposition leader Benigno S. Aquino as he returned to the Philippines from exile in the United States. Once the plane landed, Aquino was escorted to the tarmac by government soldiers and executed. Burton later testified against the soldiers accused of the assassination and provided her audio tape recording of the shooting.

Aquino’s murder sparked unrest and eventually led to the 1986 revolt that toppled dictator Ferdinand E. Marcos, and installed Corazon Aquino as president. Burton chronicled these historical events for Time, and in the book “Impossible Dream: The Marcoses, the Aquinos, and the Unfinished Revolution.” Her final years were spent freelancing for Time and working on a biography of James Brook, the 19th-century English soldier who was made a rajah of Sarawak.

3 Responses to Sandra Burton

  1. JOYCE LINDABERY

    SANDRA AND I WERE CLASSMATES BACK IN HIGH SCHOOL. SORRY TO HEAR OF HER PASSING.
    SOUNDS LIKE SHE WILL BE MISSED BY MANY,

  2. Ann Burke Spillane

    Dear Mr. and Mrs. Burton and Stephanie and family,
    I was Stephanie’s roomate in Spain and have fond memories of her stories of Sandra and how much we were in awe of her sophisticated life in New York at TIME magazine. After Spain, returning to New York, Stephanie showed me her NY apartment and we both marveled at her display of Estee Lauder cosmetics- so cosmopolitan to two seniors in college. Then I enjoyed the warmth and hopitality of the Burton family in Clinton (I would still like to return the favor).
    In subsequent years, there was never an occasion that I picked up TIME magazine without checking first where Sandra was. I was looking forward to her book on China when Tianamin (sp?) Square erupted and I mourned that the timing for Sandra had been so unfortunate.
    Stephanie, it would be wonderful to see you again and catch up on our lives since 1966.
    My sincere condolences to the entire family
    and warmwst regards,
    Ann Burke Spillane
    skyhouse@pacbell.net

  3. IAN BROOKE

    Hello, My sister is researching the story of James Brooke, Rajah of Sarawak.
    Just this morning I became aware of Sandra and her fascinating life. How wonderful it must be to have had someone like her in the family.
    Do you know if there are notes Sandra may have left regarding her own research into a proposed book on his life?
    Thank you,
    Ian Brooke

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