McCourt, who helped found the gay Chicago newspaper Windy City
Times, has died at 51.
columnist Michael Miner of the Chicago
Reader, McCourt started in the gay media as a
writer at Chicago's Gay Life newspaper in the '80s,
then left in 1985 to start Windy City
Times. Through numerous staff upheavals, McCourt
kept the paper humming along, and it became one of the most
respected local gay papers in the country.
The paper was
struggling financially by 2000, when McCourt sold the
paper's name to former editor Tracy Baim to keep it alive.
Gregory Munson, a
caretaker of McCourt's, said McCourt waged a long
battle with AIDS. "He had HIV for almost 30 years," Munson
told the Reader. "So he had that very much in
control. It seemed more to me like he just gave up." (The