Jerry Nelson, puppeteer behind Count von Count, dies at 78

August 25, 2012 8:17:02 PM

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LOS ANGELES -- Jerry Nelson, the puppeteer behind a delightful menagerie of characters including Count von Count on "Sesame Street" and Gobo Fraggle on "Fraggle Rock," has died. He was 78. 

 

Nelson, who suffered from emphysema, died Thursday night in his Massachusetts home on Cape Cod, the Sesame Workshop said Friday. 

 

"Every description of his characters describes Jerry as well," said "Sesame Street" executive producer Carol-Lynn Parente. "Silly, funny, vulnerable, passionate and musical, for sure. That voice of his was superb." 

 

Although he'd been in declining health for some time "his attitude was never bad," Parente said Friday. "He was always so grateful for what he had in his life." 

 

"We're having a rough day on the Street," she said.