Marty Grabstein, Thea White Marty Grabstein, Thea White

The death of Thea White, the voice of Muriel Bagge on Courage the Cowardly Dog, has prompted an outpouring of tributes from the industry. Marty Grabstein, who played Courage in the Cartoon Network series, has added his unmistakable voice to the chorus of condolence, as has the show’s creator John Dilworth.

In a video posted to Facebook, Grabstein pays tribute to his old colleague, who passed away aged 81 on July 30 following surgery related to liver cancer. “She made a very, very deep impact upon my life,” says the actor, adding, “She was a warm, loving, kind, extremely funny woman with a whole lot of energy — she had the energy of a 50-year-old.” Watch the video below:

Grabstein and White worked together on all four seasons of Courage the Cowardly Dog (1999–2002) as well as spin-offs and specials, including the forthcoming crossover film Straight Outta Nowhere: Scooby-Doo Meets Courage the Cowardly Dog. As this latest project got underway, the pair started speaking again regularly, chatting “about all kinds of nonsense” at 2 a.m., Grabstein recalls.

Commiserating with White’s family, he says, “It’s just so devastating to lose someone during these dark times that we reside in who was such a positive energy.” He ends by looking to the skies and addressing White, saying he looks forward to reuniting with her and eating Thai food, “because we like Thai food, right?”

Dilworth has published his own tribute via the Youtube channel of his studio Stretch Films. He reminisces about his Scottish friend Muriel, who inspired the character, then praises White’s “unique interpretation of a Scottish voice.” He pays tribute to his old colleague’s “amazing life,” noting that she was “still vibrant and vital” in her last years. Listen below:

White was born on June 16, 1940 in Newark, New Jersey. She acted on the stage in her twenties before moving to voice work later in her career, and also worked as a librarian. She is survived by her brothers John and Stewart Zitzner, John’s wife Peg Zitzner, and her nieces, nephews, grand-nieces, and grand-nephews. Her husband Andy White, a drummer who played on several Beatles tracks, died in 2015.

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