Maurice Sendak, the gay author of iconic children's books like Where the Wild Things Are and In the Night Kitchen, has died at 83.
The cause was complications from a recent stroke, said Michael di Capua, his longtime editor.
Sendak came out of the closet publicly in 2008 in an interview with the New York Times:
"Was there anything he had never been asked? He paused for a few moments and answered, 'Well, that I’m gay…I just didn’t think it was anybody’s business,' Mr. Sendak added. He lived with Eugene Glynn, a psychoanalyst, for 50 years before Dr. Glynn’s death in May 2007. He never told his parents: 'All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew.' Children protect their parents, Mr. Sendak said. It was like the time he had a heart attack at 39. His mother was dying from cancer in the hospital, and he decided to keep the news to himself, something he now regrets. A gay artist in New York is not exactly uncommon, but Mr. Sendak said that the idea of a gay man writing children books would have hurt his career when he was in his 20s and 30s."