Tex Henson Gone at 78

Renowned animator William “Tex” Henson was killed last week when a pickup truck struck him in a suburb of Dallas, Tex. The 78-year-old former Disney cartoonist was a driving force behind Chip ‘n Dale and Rocky and Bullwinkle.

At Disney, Henson, worked on such films as Song of the South, Pecos Bill, Mickey and the Beanstalk and Peter and the Wolf. As a result of his and a fellow animator’s lobbying, the chipmunk team of Chip ‘n Dale leapt off the comic pages to take roles in nearly two dozen films.

After leaving Disney, Henson moved to Mexico, where he headed up the studio that produced animation for The Rocky & Bullwinkle Show, as well as cartoons featuring the characters Underdog, Tennessee Tuxedo, and the Trix cereal rabbit.

Reuters reports that Henson went on to teach animation in the Dallas school system and drew cartoons for a small local newspaper. The Dallas County Medical Examiner said he died of head injuries at Parkland Memorial Hospital. He leaves no immediate survivors.