'Scooby-Doo' Co-Creator Joe Ruby Dead at Age 87

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A man who had his creative hand in television shows like “The Barkleys, “The Houndcats,” “Dynomutt,” “Jabberjaw” and especially “Scooby-Doo” has passed away.

According to Variety, Joe Ruby died of natural causes in Westlake Village, California, on Wednesday at the age of 87.

Ruby’s best-known work was “Scooby-Doo,” which he and Ken Spears co-created and which first aired in 1969 after a number of iterations were tested out — but Ruby didn’t start in television.

First, he was in the Navy. Then, he did a stint with Walt Disney Studios, eventually moving on to Hanna-Barbera Productions, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

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“There was no great awakening or such,” Ruby once said during an interview with

“I did some magazine cartooning years before, but never pursued it much. It was just a freak opportunity that came up at Hanna-Barbera in 1959.”

“They desperately needed people to write the short openings, closings and 30-second bridges for the Huck Hound and Yogi Bear shows, and both Ken and I started writing them on the side while we worked our regular jobs in the editorial department.”

Ken Spears and Ruby worked together for years on projects, and the creative duo accomplished a lot in their time with Hanna-Barbera.

“We loved all the ones we either wrote or were heavily involved in the writing,” Ruby said of the partners’ favorite “Scooby-Doo” episodes. “But we really liked ‘Mystery Mask Mixup’ and ‘Nowhere to Hyde’ probably best. They just came out real well overall.”

And as for Scooby Snacks, well, those were a bit of a mystery to Ruby.

“No we’ve never eaten a Scooby Snack,” he said. “We imagined they were just going to be a super delicious doggy snack.”

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The two worked well together and shared a similar vision, so eventually it was natural for them to join forces and form their own studio: “Ruby-Spears Productions.”

Ruby’s creativity was boundless.

“He never stopped writing and creating, even as he aged,” his grandson, Benjamin Ruby, told Variety.

Ruby leaves behind Carole, his wife of 63 years, as well as four children and 10 grandchildren.

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking