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Frank McCourt dies in New York

Story by Lizzie Guilfoyle

FRANK McCourt, the 78-year-old author of best-selling memoir Angela’s Ashes, died in a New York hospice on Sunday afternoon (July 19, 2009).

According to a report in the New York Times, Susan Moldow of McCourt’s publisher Scribner said the cause of his death was metastatic melanoma – melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer.

McCourt was born in New York but at an early age and during the Great Depression, travelled with his parents to Ireland.

He later returned to the States, where he worked as a New York high school teacher for 30 years.

Published in 1996, Angela’s Ashes, a memoir of the author’s impoverished childhood in Ireland, sold millions of copies and won the Pulitzer Prize. In 1999, it was adapted for film, starring Emily Watson and Robert Carlyle.

McCourt’s other works include ‘Tis and Teacher Man, which both draw on his later life in New York.