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'Kup' Successor Stella Fosters Scoops Bernie Mac Death For 'Sun-Times'.

Stella Foster, the one-time secretary who went on to replace her boss Irv 'Kup' Kupcinet as Chicago Sun-Times celebrity columnist after his death in 2003, was the first journalist to report the passing of comedian and actor Bernie Mac.

"This reporter was sound asleep in my bed early Saturday when my phone rang at 5:15 a.m., bringing me the sad, sad news that Chicago's beloved and brilliant comedian/actor Bernie Mac, aka Bernard McCullough, had succumbed to pneumonia," Foster wrote Sunday.

She broke the news of Mac's death at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago on the Sun-Times Web site.

"A source close to the grieving family told me his beautiful and devoted wife of over 30 years, Rhonda McCullough, and their beloved only child, Je'niece, were at his bedside when he made his transition," Foster wrote.

She noted that both she and Mac grew up in the Englewood neighborhood in Chicago.

Foster began her career at the Sun-Times as secretary to Kup, who by then had been a legendary gossip columnist for the better part of three decades. Towards the end of Kupcinet's life, as his health faltered with old age, Foster wrote virtually all his columns. Kupcinet died at age 91 on Nov. 10, 2003. Foster was officially named as a columnist a few weeks later.

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Title Annotation:Irv 'Kup' Kupcinet
Author:Fitzgerald, Mark
Publication:Editor & Publisher
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Aug 10, 2008
Words:219
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