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Art Kunkin, 91

Art Kunkin, 91

Art Kunkin, founder and editor of the old Los Angeles Free Press, died April 30, 2019, in Joshua Tree, The Desert Sun in Palm Springs reports. He was 91.

Kunkin, who edited the first and largest underground newspaper of its kind, from 1964 through 1972, is credited with helping to mobilize the counterculture.

Several former L.A. “hippies” posted on Kunkin’s Facebook page that the money they made hawking copies of the Free Press helped them survive on the streets in the ‘60s, The Desert Sun reported.

“The real underground papers were like in San Quentin prison, where no one knew who was doing the printing,” said counterculture icon and columnist Paul Krassner. “The L.A. Free Press was out in the front. People would go up to the cars and say, ‘Want a copy of the L.A. Free Press?’ And those people would get paid.”