Sara Fritz

December 16, 1944October 16, 2013

Sara Fritz, a respected award-winning Washington news reporter for over 40 years, passed away Wednesday, October 16, from a virulent lung infection incurred after hip replacement surgery. She was 68. Sara was widely known among Washington reporters for her integrity, tenacity and many friendships. Beginning in her native Pittsburgh, PA, Sara covered floods, unions, the White House, Congress, campaign funding, the Iran-Contra hearings, Whitewater and many, many other major news stories. She worked for United Press International (where she met her husband of 38 years), U.S. News and World Report and The Los Angeles Times. She was the Washington bureau chief of The St. Petersburg (FL) Times and, after a brief retirement, was executive director of Faith and Politics, a non-denominational ministry to Congress, and then executive director of Youth Today, which published a periodical dedicated to news about social programs intended to help troubled adolescents. Most recently, she completed a manuscript about whites who closed the schools in Prince Edward County, VA, for five years rather than integrate them. Sara was born Dec. 16, 1944. She was raised in Gibsonia, PA. She was the daughter of Richard C. Fritz and Dorothy Farr Fritz. She graduated from Richland High School and received a B.A. from Denison University in 1966. She also received an honorary degree from Denison and several other colleges. In addition to her husband, James A. Kidney, of Washington, Sara is survived by their daughter Mary, and two sisters, Marjorie Henderson and Judith Farr Demitris. Their son, Daniel, died in 2000. Interment will be private. A memorial service will be scheduled in mid-November. The family requests that donations be made in Sara’s name to the Daniel M. Kidney Memorial Scholarship Fund, Denison University, 100 W. College St., Granville, Ohio, 43023.


Sara Fritz

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Mark Kreitman

October 31, 2013

Dear Jim -
Please accept my condolences for your loss of Sara.
Life and memory of beloved marriage is among greatest joys.
With all your colleagues I wish you comfort and strength.

Melanie and David Barton

October 26, 2013

Jim and Mary,
I was so saddened to see the news of Sara in the Post, though after reading the wonderful article I was truly in awe of what all she had accomplished and contributed to our world with her pioneering journalism. You are both in our thoughts and prayers and we send you both a big huge hug.

Jim Kidney

October 24, 2013

Thank you to all of you who sent us notes on this site. Sara's memorial service will be Nov. 19 at 1 p.m. at Capitol Hill Presbyterian Church, followed by a reception at the Eastern Market North Hall. You can find out more about what happened at

Howard Thorkilson

October 23, 2013

Jim and Mary,

How sad I was to read about Sara's sudden death. That a single person could accomplish so much is truly remarkable. She will be missed both personally and professionally. Please accept my heartfelt sympathy.

Drey Samuelson

October 21, 2013

I never met Sara, but the work that she and Dwight Morris did in the fall of 1996 had a direct influence on the election of my boss, Tim Johnson, to the U.S. Senate, and I will be forever grateful to her. I am so sorry to read of her death--she clearly was an amazing person.

Andy Fisher

October 20, 2013

To Jim and Sara's family,

Sara was beautiful person. You have all endured more than most but done so with grace while raising awareness for everyone else. God bless you.

October 20, 2013

So sorry for your loss. soon no one will say,"I am sick." Isa.33:24

pat maskell

October 19, 2013


You can see how rattled I am. The first entry in this guest book is mine, but I forgot to sign my name. I hope you are able to take comfort from your many friends. Lean on us. We're here for you and your family.

Pat and Steve Maskell

Gail Harrison

October 19, 2013

We are heartsick over your sudden and terrible loss. Our hearts go out to you and Mary. We will watch for further information on the service to commemorate Sara's unique gifts and achievements. Please know you and she are in our thoughts and prayers.
Gail, Larry and Mike

Glenn Ducat

October 19, 2013

Jim, Mary and Sara's Sisters,

Pat called yesterday to inform us of Sara's passing. Words fail me.

We were shocked and are saddened beyond anything I can express. We met Sara only a few times, but she was easy to get to know and like. The announcements in the papers spoke of in her professional achievements (most of which we didn't know because of her modest nature) but rounded out the picture of a thoroughly accomplished, compassionate and very special woman. She will be missed for sure, but may you take some comfort in having had her in your lives.

Glenn and Bev