Who was Bill Plante's wife? Late CBS reporter was married twice

Rachael Grealish September 29, 2022
Who was Bill Plante's wife? Late CBS reporter was married twice
Photo by Stephen Boitano/Getty Images

CBS White House journalist Bill Plante has passed away aged 84. In his personal life, he had six children and was married twice.

It was confirmed that the award-winning longtime correspondent, Bill Plante, had died yesterday, September 28, after half a century in the news industry. Bill had even covered the fall of Saigon during the Vietnam war.

Bill Plante CBS White House journalist

Plante was 84 when he passed away but only retired in 2016 after 52 years with the news division, a career that included coverage of the civil rights movement and of Vietnam, as well as all presidential elections from 1968 to 2016.

Photo by CBS via Getty Images

He was probably best known for his work as a CBS White House journalist, a career he had for 35 years during the administrations of Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama. He also covered the State Department during the administration of George H.W. Bush

And among all his amazing moments as a correspondent, one key moment was when he shouted at George W. Bush about his ‘lack of availability’.

He also served four tours of Vietnam and covered the civil rights movement. Plante’s fellow 60 Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl, said: “He was brilliant, as a reporter and as a human being.”

Bill Plante’s wife

In his life, Plante was married twice. His first wife, Barbara Barnes Plante, he married in the early 1950s. Plante adopted her four sons from a previous marriage and the two went on to have two more. He however was predeceased by his first wife and his son, Patrick.

Plante’s second wife was Robin Smith, the award-winning documentary film producer, in 1987 – their marriage was even featured in The New York Times – and he was married to her for 34 years before his death. At the time of their marriage, Robin was a producer for NBC News. Robin is probably best known for producing the 1985 documentary American Almanac and the 2007 doc, Ready to Play.

Along with Robin Plante is survived by three brothers, Richard, Jim, and John; his sons Michael, Dan, Christopher, Brian, and David. He is also survived by eight grandchildren and a great-grandchild.

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Rachael is the Senior Content Editor at Freshered. She is NCTJ qualified with an MA in journalism. Rachael has almost ten years experience as a journalist in regional, national and international press and is passionate about creating engaging content.