"Dianne White Clatto, who was the first black weathercaster in the country when she joined KSD-TV in 1962, said she 'felt the weight of the world on my shoulders' during her early years of broadcasting,"Valerie Schremp Hahn reported Tuesday for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
"'I knew young (black) women looked up to me,' she said during an interview with the Post-Dispatch in 2005. 'To be a good model, you had to work hard. You had to develop your own style. You had to be disciplined. You just couldn't stay up all night and model in the day.'
"Mrs. White Clatto died Monday (May 4, 2015) of natural causes at the McCormack House retirement center in St. Louis. She was 77.
"Mrs. White Clatto was such a driven, no-nonsense individual she penned her own obituary, put it on file at the funeral home, prepaid for her own arrangements and donated her body to Washington University School of Medicine, said her son, Chip Clatto. She did not want a memorial service, he said. . . .
"Mrs. White Clatto, the descendant of a Civil War general's 'mistress slave,' was the first African-American model at several major St. Louis department stores. She earned the curator's scholarship to the University of Missouri-Columbia, where she recalled she was one of 22 black students on campus. She spent more than 25 years at what's now KSDK, working as a co-anchor, weather anchor and general assignment reporter. . . ."