Brown - Dark
Cause of Death
Suicide (gunshot Wound To The Head)
Claim to Fame
creator of `Gonzo journalism`, author, iconoclast
Atherton High School, Louisville Male High School
Columbia University (School of General Studies, part time classes on short story writing)
Writer, Actor/Actress, Other Crew
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Hunter Stockton Thompson (July 18, 1937 – February 20, 2005) was an American journalist and author, and the founder of the gonzo journalism movement. Born in Louisville, Kentucky, to a middle-class family, Thompson had a turbulent youth after the death of his father left the family in poverty. He was unable to formally finish high school as he was incarcerated for 60 days after abetting a robbery. He subsequently joined the United States Air Force before moving into journalism. He traveled frequently, including stints in California, Puerto Rico, and Brazil, before settling in Aspen, Colorado, in the early 1960s.
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Full Name at Birth
Hunter Stockton Thompson
Profile Bio Text
Hunter Stockton Thompson (July 18, 1937 – February 20, 2005) was an American journalist and author. Born in Louisville, Kentucky, to a middle-class family, Thompson had a turbulent youth after the death of his father left the family in poverty. He was unable to formally finish high school as he was incarcerated for 60 days after abetting a robbery. He subsequently joined the United States Air Force before moving into journalism. He traveled frequently, including stints in California, Puerto Rico and Brazil, before settling in Aspen, Colorado, in the early 1960s.
Thompson became internationally known with the publication of Hell's Angels: The Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs (1967), for which he had spent a year living and riding with the Angels, experiencing their lives and hearing their stories first hand. Previously a relatively conventional journalist, with the publication in 1970 of "The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved" he became a counter cultural figure, with his own brand of New Journalism he termed "Gonzo", an experimental style of journalism where reporters involve themselves in the action to such a degree that they become central figures of their stories. The work he remains best known for is Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream (1972), a rumination on the failure of the 1960s counterculture movement. It was first serialized in Rolling Stone, a magazine with which Thompson would be long associated, and was released as a film starring Johnny Depp and directed by Terry Gilliam in 1998.
Politically minded, Thompson ran unsuccessfully for sheriff of Pitkin County, Colorado, in 1970, on the Freak Power ticket. He was well known for his inveterate hatred of Richard Nixon, whom he claimed represented "that dark, venal, and incurably violent side of the American character" and whom he characterized in what many[who?] consider to be his greatest contribution to American Literature, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail '72. Thompson's output notably declined from the mid-1970s, as he struggled with the consequences of fame, and he complained that he could no longer merely report on events as he was too easily recognized. He was also known for his lifelong use of alcohol and illegal drugs; his love of firearms, and his iconoclastic contempt for authoritarianism, and remarked that, "I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they've always worked for me."
While suffering a bout of health problems, Thompson committed suicide at the age of 67. Per his wishes, his ashes were fired out of a cannon in a ceremony funded by his friend, Johnny Depp, and attended by a host of friends including then Senator John Kerry and Jack Nicholson. Hari Kunzru wrote that, "the true voice of Thompson is revealed to be that of American moralist ... one who often makes himself ugly to expose the ugliness he sees around him.
Thompson was born into a middle-class family in Louisville, Kentucky, the first of three sons, to Jack Robert Thompson (September 4, 1893, Horse Cave, Kentucky – July 3, 1952, Louisville), a public insurance adjuster and World War I veteran, and Virginia Ray Davison (1908, Springfield, Kentucky – March 20, 1998, Louisville), a librarian. His parents were introduced to each other by a friend from Jack's fraternity at the University of Kentucky in September 1934, and were married on November 2, 1935. Thompson's first name came from a purported ancestor on his mother's side, the Scottish surgeon John Hunter.
On December 2, 1943, when Thompson was six years old, the family settled at 2437 Ransdell Avenue, in the affluent Cherokee Triangle neighborhood of The Highlands. On July 3, 1952, when Thompson was 14 years old, his father, aged 58, died of myasthenia gravis. Hunter and his brothers, Davison Wheeler (born June 18, 1940) and James Garnet (February 2, 1949 – March 25, 1993), were raised by their mother. Hunter also had a much older half-brother, James Thompson, Jr., from his father's first marriage, who was not part of the Thompson household. Virginia worked as a librarian to support her children, and is described as having become a "heavy drinker" following her husband's death.
Jack Robert Thompson (September 4, 1893 - July 3, 1952)
Virginia Ray Davison (1908 – March 20, 1998)
Davison Wheeler (born June 18, 1940), James Garnet (February 2, 1949 – March 25, 1993)
Place of Death
Owl Creek, Colorado
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