Tom Green

Tom Green, a senior entertainment writer for USA Today, died Tuesday of complications of pancreatitis. He was 55.

Green died at the UCLA Medical Center, USA Today reported.

His 14-year-career with USA Today began with the paper’s inception. Green opened the newspaper’s Los Angeles bureau in 1982 and over the course of the ensuing years also served as L.A. bureau chief and entertainment editor.

“He was a consummate journalist and a gentle man,” USA Today executive editor Bob Dubill said. “All of us at USA Today mourn his passing and extend heartfelt condolences to his family.”

In the last 14 years, Green had interviewed virtually every top actor, director and producer. Born in Indianapolis, Green attended Northwestern U. and Indiana U., majoring in journalism and political science. At Indiana, he was an Ernie Pyle scholar and editor of the Indiana Daily Student.

“He was a Hoosier through and through,” his wife, Julie, said. “He was so proud of his Indiana heritage.”

Among his early jobs were stints as a news and feature writer for the Journal-Herald in Dayton, Ohio, and the Press-Enterprise in Riverside.

He later worked for the Sun-Telegram in San Bernardino, penned television columns and feature stories for the Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester, N.Y., and became a general feature columnist for the Plain Dealer in Cleveland. He returned to the Press-Enterprise in 1979 as an entertainment columnist.

Green is survived by his wife, daughter Megan and son Ryan.

Service will be at 1 p.m. today at Saint Mel Catholic Church in Woodland Hills.

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