D.C. native and Muppets creator Jane Henson dies at 79

"Sam and Friends" characters Harry, Kermit and Sam (left to right). Photo courtesy of Muppet Wiki

“Sam and Friends” characters Harry, Kermit and Sam (left to right).
Photo courtesy of Muppet Wiki

By Lanie Rivera
Editor

Puppet aficionado Jane Henson, 79,  known as the co-creator of Muppets, died from cancer on April 3.

Henson graduated with a degree in fine arts from the District’s Catholic University, inspiring her life that “balanced a love for fine art and education with care for the imagination-powered, eclectic Muppet movement,” according to an article on NBC Washington.

She met her former husband, Jim, at a puppetry class at the University of Maryland. During his undergraduate studies, Jim was offered a show on Washington D.C.’s WRC. The show, called “Sam and Friends,” was co-performed and co-created by Jane.

Kermit was a recurring character on the “Sam and Friends,” but he was not yet a frog.

This show helped form the large audience for the Muppets. Jane went on to further develop the Muppets through projects such as the “Muppet Show on Tour” and “Sesame Street Live,” as well as “The Art of The Muppets.”

She was even a founder of the National Puppetry Conference.

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