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Retired Dallas Morning News political reporter dies in Williamson County car crash, officials say

Wayne Slater died in the crash at FM 487 and Chris Lane near Florence. He was 74.
Credit: John Gusky
(Photographer: John Gusky)

WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas — Retired bureau chief and senior political writer for The Dallas Morning News Wayne Slater, 74, died in a car crash Monday morning just outside of Florence, Texas, according to Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) officials.

DPS officials told KVUE the crash took place around 10:30 a.m. at FM 487 and Chris Lane near Florence. Friends reported that Slater lived nearby and was involved in a head-on collision. DPS said a 2017 Mazda CX3 was traveling westbound on FM 487 – driven by Slater –  travelled into the eastbound lane and then back into the westbound lane of FM 487 "for unknown reasons." DPS said the other vehicle in the collision – a 2011 Ford F-150 – attempted to avoid the Mazda by traveling into the westbound lane but still collided with the Mazda. 

DPS said Slater was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the Ford was transported to Seton Williamson in Round Rock with minor injuries, DPS officials told KVUE.

Outside of his expertise in political journalism, Slater was also known for his two books about George W. Bush adviser Karl Rove. He also chronicled the rise of two prominent Texas governors during his time as a journalist.

“Wayne Slater was a hard-working and insightful reporter,” Bush said in a written statement to The Dallas Morning News. “He understood Texas politics better than most and contributed a lot to his field. Laura and I send our sympathy to Dianne.”

In 1985, Slater joined The Dallas Morning News' Austin bureau as a reporter.

You can read more about Slater's work with The Dallas Morning News here.

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