″Gasoline Alley” Artist Dies At Age 77
ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) _ Richard ″Dick″ Moores, author and artist of the syndicated comic strip ″Gasoline Alley,″ died today at a hospital here. He was 77.
He had been weaving the tales of Skeezix, Nina, Slim, Clovia, Joel and Rufus since 1960.
In recent years, Moores had been composing stories, drawing the faces in ink and sketching the action in pencil, then sending strips to Jim Scancarelli of Charlotte, who would ink in the drawings.
″When I came on the scene that gave him more time to devote to story lines. His compositions are tremendous. He’s got wonderful, intricate details. He’s one of the last of the - I hate to say old timers,″ Scancarelli said in a February interview.
The comic strip appears in 180 daily newspapers and 125 Sunday newspapers.
Moores, a native of Lincoln, Neb., had been drawing cartoons since high school. He attended the Academy of Fine Arts in Chicago for a year and spent five years working for ″Dick Tracy″ creator Chester Gould.
Moores did the ″Jim Hardy″ strip, which was later changed to ″Windy and Paddles,″ and shared a Chicago studio with the late Frank King, the creator of ″Gasoline Alley.″
He also spent 14 years in the Walt Disney comic strip department, where he drew ″Uncle Remus″ and ″Scamp.″ Moores also wrote and drew many comic books, albums and hard-cover books featuring Disney characters.
″Gasoline Alley″ carried the stamp of Moores’ early Disney experiences in the collection of animals that became hallmarks. Rufus and his cat, the Great Dane and the Doberman living in the too-small apartment with Slim and Clovia.
Moores began working for King in 1956 and assumed the primary responsibility for ″Gasoline Alley″ in 1960 when King died.
Moores was one of the few cartoonists whose characters aged as the years past.
″The first thing they ask is ‘When is Walt going to die?’ I won’t promise anything. People are born, they grow up, they get older. And eventually somebody’s going to have to die. But I wouldn’t do anything to hype it,″ Moores said in February.
Moores’ wife, Gretchen Stahl Moores, died in 1983. They had a daughter and two sons, one of whom died last year.