Clifford, the Big Red Dog lost his best friend this week
Author and creator of beloved storybook character Clifford, Norman Ray Bridwell was born in Kokomo, Ind., on Feb. 15, 1928. He always loved to draw. “I was not good at sports and my high school shop teacher, after a few days of class, took my tools away, telling me ‘Here’s a pad of paper instead. You seem to like to draw: stick to that,’” Bridwell remembered. After art school he labored as a commercial artist working on filmstrip illustration when he decided to attempt to earn some extra income. In 1962 he showed an editor some ideas he had been working on and she suggested he add a story to his pictures. From there and with some help from his wife, he developed the Big, Red Dog we all have grown to know and love. Over the years, Clifford has become a household name with more than 150 Clifford titles, 129 million copies in print, many translated into 13 languages.
In 1969 Bridwell and his family moved to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts. He lived there with his wife, Norma, up to the time of his passing, December 12, 2014, at the age of 86.