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‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ author Harper Lee dies at 89

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NOVEMBER 05: Pulitzer Prize winner and 'To Kill A Mockingbird' author Harper Lee smiles before receiving the 2007 Presidential Medal of Freedom in the East Room of the White House November 5, 2007 in Washington, DC. The Medal of Freedom is given to those who have made remarkable contributions to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, culture, or other private or public endeavors. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

MONROEVILLE, Ala. — Harper Lee, who won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1961 for her book, “To Kill a Mockingbird,” has died at the age of 89. The news, first reported by AL.com, was confirmed by HarperCollins Publishers. Monroeville Mayor Mike Kennedy also confirmed the news to WHNT.

Spencer Madrie, an employee at Ol’ Curiosities & Book Shoppe in Monroeville, said friends would come into the book shop frequently and purchase books for Lee, who was living at a local nursing home.

Madrie said he was told Lee passed away around 4 a.m. Friday morning.

The nursing home where Lee lived said they is not issuing a statement at this time.

Lee was quoted saying this in Newsquist in 1964:

“I never expected any sort of success with Mockingbird. I was hoping for a quick and merciful death at the hands of the reviewers but, at the same time, I sort of hoped someone would like it enough to give me encouragement. Public encouragement. I hoped for a little, as I said, but I got rather a whole lot, and in some ways this was just about as frightening as the quick, merciful death I’d expected,” Lee said.