Tomie dePaola died at age 85 on March 30, 2020 in the hospital in New Hampshire, after suffering a fall last week. He published over 200 books, including Strega Nona (1975) which received a Caldecott Honor. He also received a Newbery Honor in 1999 for his early chapter book 26 Fairmount Avenue, the first in a series based on his childhood. Later he earned the Laura Ingalls Wilder award from the American Library Association, for lifetime achievement in 2011.
DePaola wrote Oliver Button Is a Sissy (1979), also based on his childhood, one of the first picture books to address homophobia; he was an out gay man. For graduate school, he lived in the Bay Area and attended the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland and Lone Mountain College in San Francisco. www.washingtonpost.com/local/obituaries/tomie-depaola-creator-of-gently-humorous-picture-books-dies-at-85/2020/03/30/156e6992-72db-11ea-a9bd-9f8b593300d0_story.html