LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Beloved children’s book author Beverly Cleary died Thursday at 104, Harper Collins Publishers said Friday.

“We are saddened to share that cherished children’s book author Beverly Cleary passed away yesterday, March 25, at 104 years old,” Harper Collins wrote.

Cleary died in Carmel, California, where she’d lived since the 1960s.

“Beverly Cleary’s first book, Henry Huggins, was published in 1950, immediately setting a standard for realistic children’s fiction. More than forty published books later, Beverly Cleary has become beloved by generations of children,” the publishing company said.

“Mrs. Cleary has also inspired authors, including Judy Blume, to deal with the real issues in young readers’ lives. As the author and reviewer Ilene Cooper said in ALA Booklist, “’When it comes to writing books kids love, nobody does it better.’”

Suzanne Murphy, President and Publisher, HarperCollins Children’s Books shared: “We are saddened by the passing of Beverly Cleary, one of the most beloved children’s authors of all time. Looking back, she’d often say, ‘I’ve had a lucky life,’ and generations of children count themselves lucky too—lucky to have the very real characters Beverly Cleary created, including Henry Huggins, Ramona and Beezus Quimby, and Ralph S. Mouse, as true friends who helped shape their growing-up years. We at HarperCollins also feel extremely lucky to have worked with Beverly Cleary and to have enjoyed her sparkling wit.  Her timeless books are an affirmation of her everlasting connection to the pleasures, challenges, and triumphs that are part of every childhood.”

Cleary was predeceased by her husband, Clarence Cleary, and is survived by their two children, Malcolm and Marianne, three grandchildren, and one great-grandchild.

The family would like to thank her doctor, Dr. Richard King, and the health center staff at the Carmel Valley Manor.

Donations may be made in her honor to the Library Foundation of Portland, Oregon, or the Information School at the University of Washington.

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