Lionel Wilson, 79; Voice of ‘Tom Terrific,’ Children’s Author

From Staff and Wire Reports

Lionel Wilson, 79, an actor proficient in voice-overs for commercials and cartoon characters on “Captain Kangaroo” and a prolific author of books for children, died of pneumonia April 30 in New York City.

For the pioneering children’s television show, Wilson voiced all the characters of the “Tom Terrific” cartoons produced by Terrytoons from 1957 to 1959 -- superhero Tom, Mighty Manfred the Wonder Dog, and such villains as Crabby Appleton. He also voiced other cartoons, including the character Eustace in “Courage the Cowardly Dog” series, on the air since 1999.

A native of New York, Wilson attended New York University and began his career on Broadway, performing in seven plays. Over the years, he acted in summer stock and touring companies, and adapted the play “Come and Be Killed” from a novel for production at the Berkshire Drama Festival in 1976.

The bulk of Wilson’s work was directed toward young people, whom he hoped to inspire. Often using pseudonyms, he wrote biographies and several mysteries. He also recorded dozens of children’s books on tape and CDs.


Wilson recently had completed his memoirs, which he titled " ... and Also in the Cast.”