pelican-connell pelican-connell

Del Connell (1918-2011)

Del Connell

Del Connell, who was a veteran Disney animation artist, Western Publishing editor, and comic strip/book writer, passed away on August 12 at age 93. Connell started working at Disney in 1939. Among other accomplishments, he worked in Joe Grant’s Character Model department, served as a story artist on Alice in Wonderland, and wrote the shorts The Pelican and the Snipe and The Cold-Blooded Penguin.

In the 1950s, he started a thirty-year run at Western Publishing where he wrote and edited thousands of Dell and Gold Key comics featuring cartoon characters from Disney, Warner Bros., Walter Lantz, Hanna-Barbera, and MGM. He remained especially close to the Disney characters: he wrote Donald Duck comics for decades, scripted the Mickey Mouse newspaper strip between 1968 and 1988, and invented Goofy’s alter-ego Super Goof.

I never met Connell, but heard plenty of nice things about him from his colleague Pete Alvarado who worked with him at Western Publishing for many years. For more about Connell’s life and work, follow these links:

Extensive chronology and memories of Del Connell by his grandson
Remembrance by Mark Evanier
Recent article about Del in the The Bakersfield Californian

(story via Disney History blog; the Connell photo at the top of this post is taken from Mark Evanier’s remembrance post)

  • julie svendsen

    Condolences and love to Ruth, Kelly, Casey and Brady. Our family was very close to the Connells and we spent many happy times together.

  • eeteed

    an enviable career.

    it’s very sad to lose people who played important parts in animation and comics.

  • John A

    An impressive list of accomplishments from a very talented man. My condolences to his family and friends.

  • Jan McAllister

    Del and my father were good friends. I have very happy memories of times spent visiting the Connells at their beautiful home. His gorgeous wife Ruth always made us feel so welcome, and their three children were a blast to play with! Del had an extraordinarily kind and generous heart, just like my father, Julius Svendsen.
    My deepest condolences go out to the family.