TribLIVE

| Obituaries


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Pulitzer winner delved into politics, baseball

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2013, 7:38 p.m.
 

WASHINGTON — Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Richard Ben Cramer, whose narrative nonfiction spanned presidential politics and the game of baseball, has died. He was 62.

Cramer died Monday at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore from complications of lung cancer, his agent, Philippa Brophy, said. Cramer lived with his wife, Joan, on Maryland's Eastern Shore.

Cramer won the 1979 Pulitzer Prize for international reporting from the Middle East while with the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Other notable work included a best-selling biography of New York Yankees great Joe DiMaggio, an influential magazine profile of hitter Ted Williams and a critically acclaimed, behind-the-scenes account of the 1988 presidential race, “What It Takes: The Way to the White House.” Cramer was known for an in-depth reporting style that involved spending significant time with the subjects he profiled and re-creating scenes with vivid color and dialogue. His 1986 profile of Williams in Esquire magazine traced the slugger's career from early days to post-baseball life in the Florida Keys, where, Cramer wrote, locals might run into him at the tennis club, coffee bar or tackle shop.

His book on the 1988 presidential race delved into the lives and careers of the candidates, explaining how eventual winner George H.W. Bush had early in his political career resisted the urging by advisers to speak openly about his war record or the death of his young daughter from leukemia — personal topics he later discussed movingly during his campaign.

Vice President Joe Biden, who ran for the White House in 1988 and was featured in the book, said, “It is a powerful thing to read a book someone has written about you, and to find both the observations and criticisms so sharp and insightful that you learn something new and meaningful about yourself.”

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Stories

  1. Pirates notebook: Kang settling in to comfort zone
  2. Subway suspends ties with spokesman after raid at home
  3. Homestead man wanted on child sex trafficking charges nabbed in Mississippi
  4. Uber lowers fares in Pittsburgh
  5. Starkey: Burnett writing incredible final chapter
  6. Broad-based tax increases off-limits, GOP leaders tell Pennsylvania Gov. Wolf
  7. Policy to suspend employees with felony charges does not apply to Kane
  8. Mother of Wilkinsburg toddler found dead in ravine charged with her murder
  9. Penn-Trafford summer camps focus on specific topics
  10. Westmoreland County on pace to surpass record for drug-related fatalities
  11. House explodes in North Braddock