Christopher Hitchens, an Anglo-American author, journalist and commentator, died Thursday night at the age of 62, after fighting a long battle with esophageal cancer. The announcement was made by Vanity Fair magazine's Web site, which said he died at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston of pneumonia, a complication arising from his cancer.
The magazine said there would never be another like Christopher. Editor Graydon Carter described him as someone of ferocious intellect, who was as vibrant on the page as he was at the bar. Those who read him felt they knew him, and those who knew him were profoundly fortunate souls.
He is survived by his wife, Carol Blue, a California-based writer, and their daughter Antonia, as well as two children - Alexander and Sophia - from a previous marriage to Eleni Melegrau.
Christopher Hitchens was born on April 13, 1949, in Portsmouth, Hampshire, England. He graduated from Oxford in 1970 and started his career in Britain as a journalist with the New Statesman, a weekly magazine. He later moved to New York and became a contributing editor at Vanity Fair in 1992.
Hitchens was first diagnosed with cancer in June 2010, after the release of his autobiography Hitch-22. According to an article he wrote in Vanity Fair, Hitchens believed cancer victimhood contained a permanent temptation to be self-centered and even solipsistic.
He also wrote for many other publications, including The Times Literary Supplement, the Daily Express, the London Evening Standard, The Nation, Newsday and The Atlantic.
Hitchens, who became known for his scathing critiques of public figures, was the author of 17 books, including The Trial of Henry Kissinger, God is not Great and How Religion Poisons Everything.
During his student days in the 1960s, he was often arrested and assaulted as a result of his affiliations to political parties and activities. He was expelled from the Labour Party in 1967 over his opposition to the Vietnam War. In 2004, he supported the Iraq war and backed George W. Bush for re-election.