Captain Kangaroo Character Dies at 86

    August 7, 2013
    Tanya Rice
    Comments are off for this post.

Captain Kangaroo may not be a name recognizable to many, but for those familiar with children’s television show, the Captain and his cast of characters were beloved by children all over the United States. Two of these beloved characters were Grandfather Clock and Dancing Bear. The actor who lent his voice to these characters was Cosmo Allegretti.

Allegretti was first hired as a set painter. As as luck would have it, he happened to be on the set when there was a problem with one of the puppets. The puppet had been made by a professional puppeteer and producers were unsure if Allegreetti could make the transition when he volunteered for the job. It was at this time when his professional training as a puppeteer paid off. Later he created the characters Bunny Rabbit, Mister Moose, Rollo the Hippopotamus, Miss Worm, Cornelius, the Walrus, Dennis Apprentice and more. Among these, Mister Moose was the most popular.

In addition to puppeteer, Allegretti was also a professional actor who appeared in various films including Prince Of The City. His others talents included being the creator of the Magic Drawing Board.

Even though Sesame Street entering its 44th season, holds the current record for the longest running children’s’ show. The Captain Kangaroo Show aired from October 3, 1955 until December 8, 1984, making it the longest-running nationally broadcast children’s’ television program of it’s day. Many of Sesame Street’s original writers started their careers on the Captain Kangaroo Show.

Allegretti, died in Arizona of emphysema on July 26, 2013. He also had homes in homes in Hampton Bays, New York and New River, Arizona. He was 86 years old.

  • http://yahoo kier

    back in the days of good tv r.i.p.

    • http://WebProNews Debbie

      Captain Kangaroo was one of the best all time TV shows there was for kids in my time!! I even thought he was better than Sesame St. So sad producers are to busy making shows that are garbage now instead of good “old fashion” shows that a family could watch!! Guess producers think or have no more moral values, how sad!! Most shows out there now just about turn the families around and kids don’t have much to do with one another. Pray-fully we can see something productive being produced for the average family. But the old Captain K was a good old fun show; magic drawing board & the others were great. God bless you Captain & to your family.

      • http://yahoo Petey

        Debbie,you are absolutely correct. I remember the magic drawing board. And how they always called the puppies and kittens beautiful little “orange blossoms”. Great Memories.

      • jim miller

        it would be great if Netflix or block buster would offer shows like Captain kangaroo and howdy duty so we can share these wonderful shows with our gran kids are you listening guys.

  • http://yahoo Petey

    Television was very entertaining for children back then. And Mr. Allegretti was a wonderful actor along with the Captain and Mr. Greenjeans. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family. He will be missed, but always remembered.

    • s

      i’m only 51 and I remember captain kangaroo and crew and we had that show wonderama which was great but may have been only local to the wash dc area.

      • carmel

        such an endearing time with captain and all his friends back when life was so crisp and precious. things I hope as I get older I never forget with being blessed with.
        The show helped us be kids and laugh and pretend and thanks to Cosmos come alive and even tho pretend for us real. Real in our hearts and our minds such comforting safe times. I only pray that Cosmos family is comforted as we were and still are in memories of how much he brang love and kindness and taught us. They will be forever missed but never forgotten. If only there were reruns so we could relive what beautiful memories we have with our children and childrens children.
        God Bless them all and my deepest sympathy to cosmos family

    • s

      i’m only 51 and I remember captain kangaroo and crew and we had that show wonderama which was great but may have been only local to the wash dc area.

  • Jeannie

    I am 62 yrs old and remember the Captain Kangaroo show tht came on TV every saturday. Would set glued in front of the TV without moving until it was over. They will never be able to replace the first one. Too bad reruns don’t back on. I think our kids and grandkids would love the show.

    • http://y-hoo ed

      I re the song also. somethig like UP&DOWN UP/DOWN ROUND& ROUND THY GO. LET’S GO SEE THE HORSE& PONY SHOW UP&DOWN UP/DOWN UP&DOWN UP/DOWN ROUND& ROUND THY GO. Marrygo-round care-a -sell caravell music. Haven;t go to any for yrs, so not sure if this ride is still done.

  • Bill

    I know all about Captain Kangaroo – I loved that show. Wasn’t this same wonderful man Claribell on the Howdy Do Dee Show? I remember the Captain Kangaroo Show a little better than Howdy Do Dee Show with Buffalo Bob. So long ago – I am 70 years old.

    • David Ketcham

      You are correct! The Captain was also the Clown on Howdy Doody. I also watched the Captain and all of “his friends’. I am older(73).

  • catton gagon

    I remember black and white captain kankaroo shows and howdy doody show every Saturday morning which watched faithfully eating my breakfast. I wish kids could watch re -runs also, good kid viewing creating good solid positive values for life. condolences to his family. he is missed! there no comparison to mr Rodgers or sesame street

  • Rick

    I’m in my late 50’s — in fact, I was launched the same year the Captain was — and I certainly remember him. As far as Mr. Allegretti is concerned, well, I guess I didn’t really think of the puppets as puppets. They were real. Mr. Allegretti made them come alive. And I can remember a wonderful interpretation of Peter, Paul and Mary’s “Puff the Magic Dragon” done by the Magic Drawing Board. It made the ending of the song hopeful instead of sad. God blessed us with Cosmo Allegretti. I’m happy I now know his name.


    AWWWW, SORRY TO HEAR HE PASSED AWAY. What ever happened to Mr. Green Jeans.

  • Lori

    Oh how I loved watching the Captain Kangaroo show. It was so entertaining unlike most of the shows now for kids. I remember Mr Moose and the ping pong balls always falling on him. And Dancing Bear, Bunny Rabbit, Mr Green Jeans, Grandfather Clock.. Oh to have the good old days back again!!!

  • Stan 1973

    I love captain kangaroo he was my best friend and still is,
    And mr green jean.bunny rabbit mr moose and dont forget danceing
    Bear wow that bring back memory of time pass,when kids were kids
    No green hair no purple hair no piercing all over,just all american
    Kids LOVE CAPTAIN/GREENJEAN/COSMO ALLEGRETTI i will never forget the crew.

  • Kathy

    How I loved Captain Kangaroo when I was little. I remember it in black and white and can still recall the theme song. For some reason I got such a kick out of Mr. Moose and Bunny Rabbit and their antics, especially when all the ping pong balls fell on Mr Moose’s head. Such an innocent time. I wish kids T.V. would return to this type of programming. Thanks for the memories!

  • David Ketcham

    Yes! The Captain was also Clarabelle on Howdy Doody.

  • ragu4u

    “Well…pluck yer magic twanger froggy, another one bites the dust!”