Man who inspired 'Peanuts' character Linus dies at age 90

LOS ANGELES -- Linus Maurer, a cartoonist and illustrator whose old friend and colleague Charles M. Schulz borrowed his first name for Charlie Brown's blanket-wielding best friend Linus in his "Peanuts" comic strip and cartoons, has died at age 90.

See Full Article

Maurer died Jan. 29 in Sonoma, California, his longtime partner Mary Jo Starsiak told The Associated Press on Friday night. His exact cause of death was not clear, but he had struggled with Parkinson's disease and heart trouble late in life.

About 65 years ago, Maurer and Schulz worked together at Art Instruction Schools Inc. in Minneapolis, when "Peanuts" was getting started.

Schulz told the story in a book celebrating "Peanuts"' 50th anniversary.

"Linus came from a drawing that I made one day of a face almost like the one he now has," Schulz wrote. "I experimented with some wild hair, and showed the sketch to a friend of mine who sat near me at art instruction, whose name was Linus Maurer. It seemed appropriate that I should name the character Linus."

It was a common practice for Schulz, who named many "Peanuts" characters, including Charlie Brown, after the people that surrounded him.

Schulz, who died in 2000, and Maurer remained lifelong friends, both settling in the same part of Northern California north of San Francisco later in life.

There, Maurer drew editorial cartoons for the Sonoma Index-Tribune, which first reported his death (http://bit.ly/1K3TiTZ).

Maurer had a successful run with comics in his own right, with syndicated strips in the 1960s and 1970s called "Old Harrigan," "Abracadabra" and "In the Beginning." He also created the "Challenger" puzzle that was syndicated in newspaper crossword sections.

Before that, he had worked as an illustrator for IBM and AT&T in New York and as an art director for the McCann Erickson ad agency and Wells Fargo Bank in San Francisco.



Advertisements

Latest Entertainment News

  • Val Kilmer confirms cancer struggle on Reddit

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Actor Val Kilmer has finally confirmed longrunning reports suggesting he has been battling cancer, insisting his swollen tongue is “healing all the time”. The Heat star’s health has been under scrutiny in recent years, and in January 2015, he was said to have checked into the UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles to have a suspected tumour in his throat removed. Source
  • Roger Daltrey: The Who may never tour again

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    The Who frontman Roger Daltrey has urged fans to catch them in concert while they can as he’s unsure if the rockers will tour again after their upcoming U.S. dates. The Pinball Wizard stars have been touring constantly for the last two years, and while Daltrey loves playing for their fans, the ageing rockers have had enough of life on the road. Source
  • Bruce Springsteen evaded the taxman for years

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    Bruce Springsteen evaded paying taxes for several years during the early part of his career. The 67-year-old opened up about the financial problems that landed him in hot water with the IRS during a candid talk with Tom Hanks at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York. Source
  • 'Fate of the Furious' races to $1B at the box office [Video]

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — “The Fate of the Furious” throttled past $1 billion globally and took No. 1 at the box office for the third straight week on a weekend where multicultural offerings dominated North American theatres. As expected, the eighth “Fast and the Furious” installment stayed atop the domestic box office with an estimated $19.4 million. Source
  • Globalism reigns at box office, while Fate of the Furious passes $1B

    Entertainment CBC News
    A South India sensation, a Hispanic-focused comedy and the highest-grossing film ever directed by an African-American made up the top three films in North America on a culturally diverse box office weekend. As expected, it was another runaway weekend for The Fate of the Furious, which took No. Source
  • Francis Ford Coppola and Godfather cast reunite at Tribeca Film Fest

    Entertainment CBC News
    Debilitating studio battles. One miraculously still cat. Mooning contests between James Caan and Marlon Brando. These were the memories shared, 45 years later, on the making of The Godfather in a rare reunion of the film's cast and director Francis Ford Coppola at Radio City Music Hall. Source
  • 'Godfather' director Francis Ford Coppola, Al Pacino, other cast reunite at Tribeca Film Fest

    Entertainment Toronto Sun
    NEW YORK — Debilitating studio battles. One miraculously still cat. Mooning contests between James Caan and Marlon Brando. These were the memories shared, 45 years later, on the making of The Godfather in a rare reunion of the film’s cast and director Francis Ford Coppola at Radio City Music Hall. Source
  • CBC News takes home 4 awards from Canadian Association of Journalists

    Entertainment CBC News
    CBC News has been recognized for its investigative work and strong storytelling with four awards from the Canadian Association of Journalists annual banquet on Saturday. Recipients included senior correspondent Adrienne Arsenault and producer Nazim Baksh for The Extremes, which looks at why Belgium was a target for a terrorist attack. Source
  • Box office: 'Furious' passes $1B, 'Latin Lover' surprises

    Entertainment CTV News
    NEW YORK -- "The Fate of the Furious" throttled past $1 billion globally and took No. 1 at the box office for the third straight week on a weekend where multicultural offerings dominated North American theatres. Source
  • Iranian filmmaker jailed for his work released early

    Entertainment CBC News
    An award-winning Iranian filmmaker imprisoned over his work has been released after serving about five months of his year-long sentence, though he doesn't know whether he'll make movies again in the Islamic Republic. Keywan Karimi told The Associated Press on Sunday that he credited international pressure for his early release, as well as escaping the 223 lashes that were part of his sentence. Source