November 30, 1909 - November 24, 1994
San Diego Union-Tribune, The (CA) - Tuesday, November 29, 1994
OAKLAND -- Nora Hampton, a former reporter for The Oakland Tribune who was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for her firsthand account of being hijacked, has died at age 82.
Mrs. Hampton died in Orinda on Friday, five days short of her 83rd birthday.
With a career that included everything from writing ad copy to putting out publicity for the Truman and Eisenhower White Houses, Mrs. Hampton was known for her drive.
She joined the Tribune in the 1960s, where she created a new fashion section. She traveled to shows in Paris, London and Rome and had an exclusive interview with Wallis Simpson, the woman for whom Edward VIII gave up his throne.
But Mrs. Hampton's biggest story came in 1969 on a flight from Oakland to New York, when her plane was hijacked and forced to land in Cuba. Upon her return to the United States, she refused to talk to the FBI until she had telephoned a scoop to the Tribune.
And she had more to tell than a gripping eyewitness account. Mrs. Hampton had rifled through the hijacker's carry-on luggage and was able to supply his identity, along with such sartorial details as the number of shorts and socks packed and the style of his expensive beaver hat.
She is survived by her husband and a son. A memorial is planned.