Best-selling author and literary editor Jean Stein died Sunday, the Los Angeles Times reports. An NYPD official says the 83-year-old jumped from the 15th floor of a building in Manhattan. "She was pretty depressed," a longtime friend says. "We were all worried." Stein authored three oral histories—the most recent, about early Hollywood, was published in 2016—that one critic called "eye-opening." Her other oral histories covered the death of Robert Kennedy and the actress/socialite Edie Sedgwick. Stein's publisher, Random House, released a statement saying it's "greatly saddened to hear the news" of the author's death, according to the AP.
The daughter of the founder of the Music Corp. of America, Stein was "a member of Hollywood royalty," per the Times. She went on to have a fascinating life, running in many different circles. Stein was an assistant on the original production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and an editor of the Paris Review, the Guardian reports. She was respected by Joan Didion, friends with Dennis Hopper, edited by George Plimpton, and romantically involved with William Faulkner. One of Stein's husbands worked in the Justice Department under Kennedy; the other was a Nobel prize-winning neurophysiologist.