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Famous Like Me > Writer > R > Mike Royko

Profile of Mike Royko on Famous Like Me

Name: Mike Royko  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 19th September 1932
Place of Birth: Chicago, Illinois, USA
Profession: Writer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

Mike Royko (September 19, 1932 – April 29, 1997) was a long-running newspaper columnist in Chicago, Illinois.

Royko grew up in Chicago living in an apartment above a bar. Once he became a columnist, he drew upon his childhood experiences to become the voice of the everyman Chicagoan. Although he could use biting sarcasm, he never spoke down to his readers, always remembering that he was one of them.

Royko began his career as a columnist for the Glenview Naval Air Base newspaper and the City News Bureau of Chicago before moving to the Chicago Daily News. He worked for the Daily News as a political reporter and was an irritant to the city's machine politicians with his penetrating and skeptical questions and reports.

He covered Cook County politics and government and wrote a weekly political column. He soon supplemented that with another weekly column on Chicago's active folk music scene. These columns were successful, and soon he was given a regular slot writing on all topics for the Daily News, an afternoon paper with a strong liberal slant.

When the Daily News shut its doors, Royko moved to the Chicago Sun-Times. In 1984, he left the Sun-Times after it was sold to a group headed by Rupert Murdoch, for whom Royko said he would never work. He famously claimed, "No self-respecting fish would be wrapped in a Murdoch paper" and that, "His goal is not quality journalism. His goal is vast power for Rupert Murdoch, political power." He quickly found employment writing his column at the rival Chicago Tribune, where he wrote until his death at 64, which was caused by a brain aneurysm. Royko's columns were syndicated in more than 600 newspapers across the country, and he wrote more than 7500 columns over a four-decade career.

Royko won a Pulitzer Prize in 1972, the National Press Club Lifetime Achievement Award in 1990 and the Damon Runyon Award in 1995. Many of his columns were collected in book form, although his most famous book remains the 1971 unauthorized biography of Richard J. Daley, Boss.

Royko was a lifelong fan and critic of the Chicago Cubs. Just prior to the 1990 World Series he wrote about the findings of another fan, Ron Berler, who had discovered a seemingly spurious correlation called the "Ex-Cubs Factor". He predicted that the heavily-favored Oakland Athletics would lose the Series to the Cincinnati Reds. The accuracy of that unlikely prediction, in stunning fashion (four game sweep) propelled the Ex-Cubs Factor theory into the spotlight.

Mike Royko is entombed in Acacia Mausoleum, Acacia Park Cemetery, Chicago.

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Mike Royko