Jay Richard Kennedy, self-made writer, stockbroker and something of a jack-of-all-professions, has died at the age of 80.
He died Monday at Westlake Hospital of heart failure.
Of Kennedy's two dozen songs, four novels and four screenplays, his best-known work was probably the 1955 film "I'll Cry Tomorrow." He had adapted his widely praised screenplay from the autobiography of singer Lillian Roth which described her 16-year bout with alcoholism.
He also wrote one of the earliest Hollywood insider novels, "Prince Bart: A Novel of Our Times."
Priding himself as a self-made man, Kennedy claimed he spent his teen years traveling around the country, working at about 28 trades and professions. The jobs included longshoreman, wrangler, farmer, bricklayer, painter, printer and even nightclub singer.
In the 1950s, he tried investment banking with his Jay R. Kennedy Co. Inc. stockbrokerage in New York. In the 1970s, he studied psychotherapy and began putting his diverse background to use in his Center for Human Problems Inc. in Tarzana.
Kennedy is survived by one daughter, Susan Hile, of Arlington, Va.