From a New York Times online article (Feb 17, 2020):
Charles Portis, Elusive Author of ‘True Grit,’ Dies at 86 The publicity-shy Mr. Portis earned a modest but devoted readership and accolades as America’s “least-known great writer.”Charles Portis, the publicity-shy author of “True Grit” and a short list of other novels that drew a cult following and accolades as the work of possibly the nation’s best unknown writer, died on Monday at a hospice in Little Rock, Ark.
He was 86.His death was confirmed by his brother Jonathan, who said Mr. Portis had been in hospice care for two years and in an Alzheimer’s care facility for six years prior.Mr. Portis was in his early 30s and well established as a reporter at The New York Herald Tribune in 1964, when he decided to turn to fiction full time. The decision astonished his friends and colleagues at the paper, among them Jimmy Breslin, Tom Wolfe and Nora Ephron.He had covered the civil rights movement in the South: riots in Birmingham, Ala.; the jailing of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Albany, Ga.; Gov. George C. Wallace’s attempt to stop the desegregation of the University of Alabama.