Everyone called him Danny
Danny Pearl, Stanford graduate and Wall Street Journal reporter, was kidnapped on January 23, 2002, in Karachi, Pakistan at the height of America’s “war on terrorism” in Afghanistan. Some time later, he was murdered by his captors who had lured him to a false interview with a supposed terrorist leader. A month after his kidnapping, they released a videotape of his particularly grisly murder.
His abduction and murder, which came while he was working on a story, set off a worldwide outpouring of indignation and sympathy. A compassionate, fun-loving, humorous man who had striven to link cultures through his writings, he had hundreds, perhaps thousands, of friends and admirers around the globe. They flocked to dozens of memorials held for him in many different cities after his death became known. He was 38 when he died.
Daniel Pearl was born October 10, 1963, in Princeton, New Jersey. His family moved to Southern California when he was three. He graduated from Stanford University with honors in 1985, having majored in the Department of Communication.
While at Stanford, he interned at the Palo Alto Weekly and one summer, at the Indianapolis Star. After graduation, he worked at the North Adams Transcript in Massachusetts, the Berkshire Eagle, and the Boston Phoenix. He joined the Wall Street Journal in 1990, and became a foreign correspondent in 1996. He was working from Bombay, India as South Asia bureau chief at the time of his death.
He was survived by his wife, Mariane, who was pregnant with their first child at the time of his abduction. He was also survived by his parents, Judea and Ruth, and sisters, Michelle and Tamara. A son, Adam, was born after Danny’s death.
His writings were collected in a book, “At Home in the World: Collected Writings of Daniel Pearl from The Wall Street Journal,” edited by Helene Cooper and published by Simon & Schuster in 2002. In addition, Stanford Magazine published in its May/June 2002 issue a profile that helped explain why the world responded so deeply to his kidnapping and death.