Vince Flynn, Author of Mitch Rapp Thrillers, Dies at 47

Vince Flynn

Vince Flynn, a best-selling author of political thriller novels, died early Wednesday morning at United Hospital in St. Paul, Minn. after a long battle with prostate cancer. He was 47.

He was best known for his CIA page-turners that starred Mitch Rapp, a counterterrorism operative.

Flynn was born on April 6, 1966, in St. Paul. He graduated from U. of St. Thomas with a degree in economics in 1988. After college, Flynn went on to work for Kraft General Foods as an account and sales marketing specialist.

After leaving his job at Kraft, Flynn accepted an aviation candidate slot with the United States Marine Corps. However he was medically disqualified from the program due to several concussions and convulsive seizures he suffered as a child following a car accident. But this time spent was not for nothing. It was here that Flynn became inspired to write a book, even though he was diagnosed with dyslexia in grade school.

After moving back to the work force and two years at a commercial real estate company, Flynn decided to devote himself full time to writing: he quit his job, moved to Colorado and began working on what would eventually become his first novel, “Term Limits.”

Flynn has published 14 novels centered around the Mitch Rapp character. The majority of those novels have made it to the New York Times bestseller list. Flynn self-published “Term Limits,” in 1997 before landing a publishing deal.

He sold more than 15 million books in the U.S. alone. Some of his other titles include “American Assassin,” “Separation of Power,” “Act of Treason” and “Pursuit of Honor.” Motion picture rights to Flynn’s character Mitch Rapp have been optioned by CBS Films with the intention of making a character-based, action-thriller movie franchise.

Flynn announced in 2011 that he was diagnosed with Stage 3 metastatic prostate cancer but continued to write.

He is survived by his wife Lysa Flynn, and three children.

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  1. Kristina Dahl says:

    I have only started reading Vince Flynn’s novels recently, and have thoroughly enjoyed them. I was so surprised to see that he had passed away so young. I am so sorry for him and for his family. And especially for his children. I know what it is like to lose a parent waaay too early.

  2. Jay Moore says:

    Way too young for us to lose this guy. I will miss every new book possibility. Two of my favorite media artists, Vince and Dan Fogelberg, have succumbed to this dreaded disease. God please cuddle his family friends. We loved having you Vince. I will see you again.

  3. Pat says:

    This was a huge shock to me as I was looking to see when his next book would be out

    Vince Flynns books inspired me to start reading again. I could not put any of his books down. I was really looking forward to the potential movie based on the Mitch Rapp series.

    I am hoping that movie is still going to happen So all his fans can enjoy a dedication and farewell to an amazing writer.

    I am hoping that some one can pick up where he left off. Mitch Rapp and Vinces writing legacy must live on. It could only be some one close to him who has the respect for his work. Someone knew his dedication, style and details in his writing that kept many from putting one of his books down before finishing!!

    Most importantly though, I want to give a moment of silence and time to Say, “I am sorry for your loss” to Mr. Flynns close friends and family. He will be missed !!

    Pat Johnson

  4. Joe Henny says:

    Vince and his books will be missed. Perhaps his wife has picked up his talent and can continue his style of writing.

  5. Tim Ragen says:

    I enjoyed reading all of Mr. Flynn’s novels……my favorite author and he will be missed !!

  6. Liz says:

    My heart goes out to his family and devoted readers. Very sad. I will miss you and your books.

  7. SHARI CASEY says:


  8. jason broadway says:

    RIP Mr. Flynn. Your novels have entertained me for years. Thank you for sharing your gift of writing with the world.

  9. Patricia T Gillen says:

    I looked this month to see if another Mitch Rapp thriller was published. Then yesterday I heard the sad news of Vince Flynn”s death. I loved reading his books. Love and strength to his wife and children.

  10. Ralph says:

    When you lose a favorite author its the same as losing a good friend. I miss Robert Parker and I am missing Vince Flynn too. I will miss Mitchel Rabb also.

  11. Daniel stjames says:

    RIP Vince Flynn you will be very missed, even by those that only live in shadow and secret

  12. Chris says:

    He was a great writer. Left us way too soon.

  13. RickyD says:

    I love all Vince Flynn books and hope there will be some movies based on Mitch Rapp in the future.
    Our prayers are with his family and friends. Rest in peace Vince Flynn.

  14. Brian says:

    Sad. I thought since a new book was coming out he had beaten his Cancer. Don’t care for his political views but his talent as a writer will be greatly missed. RIP.

  15. Caleb Rogers says:

    R.I.P. Vince Flynn. You will be missed.

  16. bmoore says:

    RIP…Mitch Rapp…Vince Flynn will be missed.

  17. les zinberg says:


  18. Tresa Gardella says:

    You will never die Vince!!! I’ll keep reading them over & over. God Bless your family at this time.

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