Scooby-Doo co-creator Joe Ruby dead at 87 from 'natural causes' as grandson claims he 'never stopped creating'

SCOOBY-DOO creator and legendary animation writer Joe Ruby is dead at 87 from “natural causes.”

The television executive passed away at his Los Angeles home on Wednesday, his grandson Benjamin Ruby told Variety. 



Benjamin shared to the outlet his grandfather “never stopped writing and creating, even as he aged.”

Joe created the iconic children’s franchise with business partner Ken Spears.

Their first Scooby-Doo animated series launched on CBS in 1969. 

After a number of initial revisions on the original storyline, the co-creators finalized the famous five. 


Freddie, Velma, Daphne, Shaggy and of course, his best friend and Great Dane Scooby-Doo, have remained a pop culture staple throughout the decades since. 

Since the Mystery Inc. gang’s television debut 50 years ago, the series has gone on to grow into several TV specials and a number of feature-length films. 

Most recently, the characters were reimagined in The Warner Bros. movie, Scoob! – which came out earlier this year starring Zac Efron and Amanda Seyfried.

Co-creators Joe and Ken also went on to create the 1960’s cartoon Dynomutt, Dog Wonder and the 1976 animated shark comedy Jabberjaw.



The Los Angeles native first began his career at Walt Disney Studios and met his longtime business parter wile they both worked at Hanna-Barbera Productions.

They left to focus on creating original content and soon After, Scooby-Doo was created.

After their series became a global hit, Joe and Ken were hired by CBS to oversee their coveted Saturday morning cartoons programs. 

The animation mogul went on to become the executive producer of several cartoon versions of popular live-action shows at the time. 

He led production for shows and movies such as Punky Prewster, Rambo and Police Academy. 

Joe is survived by his wife, Carole, along with four children and 10 grandchildren.

More to follow…

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