Pat Conroy

Cover photo of a bird-filled sky above a line of trees at sunset.
Kathleen Robbins

(Originally broacast 01/12/17) - Ed Madden, Columbia's Poet Laureate, writes that poet Tim Conroy “is a theologian of the best kind, a theologian of the ordinary.”

Remembering Pat Conroy: a Conversation with his Family

Mar 14, 2016

Pat Conroy, the beloved author of The Great Santini, The Lords of Discipline and The Prince of Tides,  died March 4,  among his family, at home in Beaufort, S.C. He was 70 years old. He had announced his diagnosis of pancreatic cancer in early February.

In 2014, Conroy recorded two remarkable episodes of Walter Edgar's Journal, the second of which "Pat Conroy and Family - The Death of Santini"  will be rebroadcast this week.

In the spring of 1936, when it was first published, Margaret Mitchell's Gone With The Wind was an instant success. Mitchell's book won the Pulitzer Prize in 1937 and in 1939 the film adaptation won eight Academy Awards.

Now Pat Conroy, best-selling author of The Prince Of Tides, has written the introduction to a 75th anniversary commemorative reprinting of the epic American story. He tells NPR's Mary Louise Kelly that he's had a lifelong connection with the book.

Pat Conroy has always sought refuge in books. As a child growing up in a military family, Conroy learned from his mother that books could be his constant companions as the family shuttled from Marine base to Marine base.

"What I remember about her, from the very earliest time of my life, is her reading to me," Conroy tells NPR's Scott Simon. "She had a great tone, a warm style, a terrific Southern accent. She read us lots of poetry ... I can still hear her voice."

Novelist Pat Conroy, who announced last month that he was suffering from pancreatic cancer, has died, according to a statement from his publisher. Conroy was 70.

He announced his diagnosis on Facebook almost three weeks ago, saying "I intend to fight it hard."

Today's statement from Todd Doughty, executive director of publicity at Doubleday included comments from Conroy's wife and his longtime editor:

(Originally broadcast 04/04/14) - Pat Conroy, author of The Water is WideThe Great SantiniThe Prince of TidesThe Death of Santini, joins Dr. Walter Edgar for an event celebrating the author’s life;  his work; and One Book, One Columbia’s 2014 selection, My Reading Life (Nan A. Talese, 2010). The conversation was recorded before an audience of over 2000, at Columbia’s Township Auditorium, on the evening of February 27, 2014.