×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Jim Thurman, 72, TV writer

Emmy winner wrote for 'Sesame Street'

Jim Thurman, Emmy-award winning children’s television writer, died in Sheffield, MA, April 14 after a short illness. He was 72.

One of the early team of writers for Children’s Television Workshop, creators of Sesame Street, Thurman wrote for “Sesame Street,” “The Electric Company,” for which he was part of the Emmy-award winning writing team and “321 Contact.” He also wrote sketches for Jim Henson’s “The Muppet Show,” and performed voices such as “Sesame Street’s” Teeny Little Super Guy.

Thurman helped kids have fun with math as co-creator, with the late David D. Connell, of “Square One TV.” As senior producer and head writer, he helped create the Mathnet segments, a parody of “Dragnet” featuring calculator-toting detectives.

Joan Ganz Cooney, founder and former president of Children’s Television Workshop (now Sesame Workshop) said, “Jim was a stalwart spirit within the Workshop. He was important not only for what he produced but for the positive spirit he had as he did it. He was an utter joy to work with, and was truly funny.”

Thurman began his career in advertising in Los Angeles where he and writing partner, the late Gene Moss, formed a boutique ad agency, Creative Advertising Stuff. His comedy writing ability soon led him to television comedy, where he wrote for Bob Hope, Dean Martin, Carol Burnett, Bill Cosby and Bob Newhart.

With Moss he also wrote and provided voices for “Shrimpenstein,” a satirical children’s television program that aired in Los Angeles during the late 1960s. The two also wrote all 156 episodes and provided voices for the syndicated cartoon, “Roger Ramjet.”

Born in Dallas, he grew up in Vicksburg, Miss. and graduated the U. of Michigan.

In recent years Jim continued to write, do voice work and wrote a weekly column for his local paper.

Jim is survived by his wife, Patricia;  two sons; a daughter; four grandchildren; and a sister. 

More TV

  • A.P. BIO -- "Melvin" Episode 208

    'AP Bio' Canceled After Two Seasons at NBC

    “AP Bio” has been canceled at NBC. Series creator Mike O’Brien shared the news with fans on Twitter, writing that “This has been my favorite project of my life.” In the single-camera comedy, Glenn Howerton portrayed a disgraced Harvard philosophy scholar who lost out on his dream job and was forced to return to Toledo, [...]

  • James Holzhauer $2 million

    'Jeopardy!' Champion James Holzhauer Hits $2 Million Winnings Milestone

    This current “Jeopardy!” player has just won over $2 million on the popular game show. Who is James Holzhauer? The 34 year old professional sports gambler from Las Vegas has hit a “Jeopardy!” milestone by becoming only the second person in the show’s history to win over $2 million in regular season play. Holzhauer won [...]

  • Kanye West Shares a Memory of

    Kanye West Shares a Touching Memory of His Mother in Letterman Interview

    In a preview of David Letterman’s interview with Kanye West, which begins streaming next Friday, May 31, the musician’s wife Kim Kardashian West, tweeted a clip of him sharing a touching memory of his mother, Donda, who died in 2007 after a surgical procedure. While his wife looks on smiling, West answers Letterman’s question about [...]

  • CNN Lays Off Some Health Journalism

    CNN Lays Off Some Health Journalism Staffers

    CNN has laid off a handful of staffers from its health-journalism unit after deciding to place its health, climate and Southeastern newsgathering operations under a single aegis. ” As part of the normal course of business, our newsgathering team made a small restructure earlier this week that ultimately impacts 6-7 employees within CNN’s Health Unit,” [...]

  • Henry Ian Cusick

    'Lost' Star Henry Ian Cusick Signs With Buchwald (EXCLUSIVE)

    Henry Ian Cusick, best known for playing Desmond on the hit ABC series “Lost,” is signing with talent agency Buchwald for representation. Cusick also starred in the CW sci-fi/drama “The 100” and was most recently seen in the Fox series “The Passage.” His other notable television credits include “Scandal,” “24,” “Fringe,” “The Mentalist,” “Body of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content