LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Los Angeles helicopter pilot-reporter Bob Tur, who famously covered the L.A. riots and the O.J. Simpson slow-speed freeway chase, said she suffers from gender dysphoria and is in the process of becoming a woman.
Tur told KNX 1070’s Chris Sedens and Diane Thompson that she is in the early stages of aggressive hormone replacement therapy to fully transform from male to female.
The 53-year-old, who worked for a number of L.A. news outlets, including CBS, said she was born with a female brain and a male body.
“It’s a genetic disorder that happens in utero. Nobody knows exactly why, but you’re born with a female or feminized brain. The corpus callosum is the main structure that joins the left and right hemispheres and it’s a nightmare if you don’t really know who you are. You think you’re a woman, but you’re a man,” she said.
Tur said her body has already started to change after being on hormones for the past 35 days.
“There have been incredible changes that happen physically and mentally. Mental changes have already happened. The brain is plastic, so its gotten smaller and feminized. I’m thinking the same way a woman would think. About the five-month mark, you won’t recognize me. My body is changing, my skin is changing, hair is changing, and I’ll have a female shape. Breasts start growing and I’ll lose body hair. Later on, about 12 months, there are another couple of surgeries. Facial feminization surgery and sexual reassignment surgery,” she said.
Tur said she chose to come out publicly about her life-altering decision because she’s “done hiding.”
“I’m done trying to deal with this. It’s gotten very bad in the last five years. It’s been a very easy process once I made the decision to go forward. Now that my brain is getting the right hormones…I had no idea that life was like this. I just had no idea. It’s amazing. The dysmorphic OCD thoughts are gone. For the first time, I’m truly happy,” she said.
The journalist said friends and family have been supportive of the change.
“I have not had a single negative response,” she said. “I didn’t realize I had that many friends. A few people knew. A few people figured it out. For the most part, people didn’t know. They were in a state of shock initially. My kids were in a state of shock. And they have been going through this mourning process. Bob Tur has got to die. And that’s going to happen within the next three or four months. There’s a mourning process, but they’ve been very, very supportive.”
Tur, who will change her name from Robert to Zoey, was previously married and has two children. Her daughter, Katy Tur, is a correspondent for NBC News.
Tur was known for dating Carrie Fisher in 2003. They split two years later.