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One of the more durable hard-copy newspapers on the market has lost its founding father. USA Today's guiding light Allen "Al" Neuharth has passed away at his home in Florida at the age of 89. Formerly the chairman of Gannett (NYSE: GCI ) , the company that launched and still operates the newspaper, Neuharth battled members of his own board to get his proposed national broadsheet launched in 1982.
Initially dismissed as "McPaper" for its heavy use of graphics and color and perceived light coverage of news and current affairs, USA Today is still a common and popular item on newsstands throughout the country. As of 2012, it had a total circulation of 1.7 million, putting it in an elite category with publications such as News Corp's The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times Company's (NYSE: NYT ) eponymous gazette.