“Her smile and her laugh and her spirit were amazing. There was no quit in her. I had convinced myself that we had a miracle warrior on our side.” – Michael Valdes, KABB anchorman

Karen Martinez, 37, passed away last night after a long valiant fight with breast cancer. Martinez’s 9 p.m. news co-anchor and longtime KABB colleague, Michael Valdes, spoke with emotion about the woman he said always managed to make people’s lives better when she came into a room.

According to Valdes, Martinez never gave up; she was taking treatment for her disease at home, where she lost her final fight. She leaves behind a loving husband and three children.

Valdes wasn’t able to sleep after learning the sad news. Very early this morning, he went to KABB, where he and his colleagues put together video tributes to Martinez on the station’s “Fox News First” and “Daytime @ Nine” programs. Plans are also in the works to run a special story remembering Karen — and giving voice to other heroes waging the fight against cancer — on the station’s flagship 9 p.m. news broadcast, Valdes said.

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