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Bob McGrath, Sesame Street Icon, Dead at 90

He was one of the original and longest-performing stars of the children's show.
  • Bob McGrath. (Photo: Everett Collection)
    Bob McGrath. (Photo: Everett Collection)

    Bob McGrath, Sesame Street multi-hyphenate, has passed away. He was 90 years old. 

    McGrath's family confirmed that he had died Sunday in a Facebook post. "Hello Facebook friends. The McGrath family has some sad news to share. Our father Bob McGrath, passed away today. He died peacefully at home, surrounded by his family." 

    The actor and children's author was one of the original cast members of Sesame Street and portrayed lovable music teacher Bob Johnson. He first appeared in the series in 1969 and would continue to for nearly 50 years. McGrath performed iconic songs like "If You're Happy and You Know It", "Sing a Song", and "Can You Tell Me How to Get to Sesame Street?". 

    Sesame Workshop mourned McGrath's loss in a Twitter thread, writing "A founding cast member, Bob embodied the melodies of Sesame Street like no one else, and his performances brought joy and wonder to generations of children around the world...whether teaching them the ABCs, the people in their neighborhood, or the simple joy of feeling music in their hearts. A revered performer worldwide, Bob’s rich tenor filled airwaves and concert halls from Las Vegas to Saskatchewan to Tokyo many times over."

    McGrath's final Sesame Street episode, "Having a Ball", aired in 2017. 

    Jade Budowski is a freelance writer with a knack for ruining punchlines and harboring dad-aged celebrity crushes. She was previously a reporter/producer at Decider and is a member of the Television Critics Association. Follow her on Twitter: @jadebudowski.

    TOPICS: Sesame Street, Bob McGrath, Obits