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Jerry Nelson, the Man Behind the ‘Sesame Street’ Count, Has Passed

Jerry Nelson dead
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It’s a sad day for lovers of ‘Sesame Street’ everywhere — Jerry Nelson, the puppeteer who gave Count von Count his voice passed away Thursday of unspecified causes at the age of 78. In addition to the Count, Nelson also voiced Sherlock Hemlock, the Amazing Mumford and other characters for the show, as well as numerous other well-loved Muppets from a variety of other shows.

Nelson was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but grew up in Washington D.C. He began puppeteering under Bil Baird (who also trained Jim Henson), and his first work with The Muppets was on ‘The Jimmy Dean Show,’ where he found himself providing the voice for Rowlf in Frank Oz’s absence. When that show was over he took a break from working with Henson for a while, but came back to work on ‘Sesame Street.’ On the show, he was the first person to provide the voice for Snuffleupagus.

He also provided the voice for Emmett in ‘Emmett Otter’s Jug Band Christmas.’ For ‘Fraggle Rock,’ he performed voices for Gobo Fraggle, Pa Gorg and the unforgettable Marjory the Trash Heap.

This is merely a smattering of the characters Nelson brought to life over the years, and the work that he has done won’t soon be forgotten.

In honor of Nelson, here is a video of the Count counting his feelings. Thanks again, for bringing smiles and laughter to children for over 40 years.

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