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Mike Royko

Mike Royko (born September 19, 1932, died April 29, 1997) was a 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, who Royko said he would never work for. He quickly found employment writing his column at the rival Chicago Tribune, where he wrote until his death, 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.

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