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Indianapolis Novelist Dan Wakefield Dies at Age 91

(Provided Photo/Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library via Facebook/Marc Leeds)

INDIANAPOLIS (WIBC-FM) – Novelist, journalist, and screenwriter Dan Wakefield has died at the age of 91.

His best-selling novels, Going All the Way and Starting Over were made into feature films.

He eventually wrote the screenplay for Going All the Way, which starred Ben Affleck, Rachel Weisz, and Rose McGowan.

Wakefield also created the NBC prime time television series James at 15 (1977–78) and was the story editor of the series (1977).

“His unwavering support and boundless enthusiasm for our mission enriched our endeavors and inspired us to continue spreading our mission far and wide. Dan made a difference. He was generous with his time. He was passionate about civil rights. He was a compassionate teacher. He was passionate about family and friends. He was part of Kurt’s “extended family” and our extended family. We will miss him terribly,” said the Kurt Vonnegut Museum and Library on its Facebook page.

Wakefield was born in Indianapolis where his family lived in the Broad Ripple neighborhood.

He went to Public School #80 and Shortridge High School, where he began his writing career as a sports columnist for the school newspaper, The Shortridge Daily Echo, and was the school’s sports correspondent for The Indianapolis Star. During his summers as a college student, he would work in The Star sports department and as a general assignment reporter for The Grand Rapids Press.

He left Indianapolis in 1952 for New York City, where he graduated from Columbia College, with a B.A. with Honors in English, after having studied with the literary critics Mark Van Doren and Lionel Trilling. He also worked with sociologist C. Wright Mills.