Cosmo Allegretti, the talented puppeteer behind Captain Kangaroo's friends on the CBS show of the same name, has passed away aged 68 after falling ill with emphysema. His attorney and friend John Munzel confirmed that Allegretti had suffered with the respiratory disease and had died on 26th July, in a statement on Wednesday (7th August).

Watch A Clip Of Cosmo Allegretti's Puppetry On Captain Kangaroo:

The Associated Press reports that the puppet and voice actor died in Arizona where he had a New River home in addition to a Hampton Bays residence in New York. He was briefly married during the 1950s to Carol Lawrence, a Broadway actress who would go on to appear on TV series such as Saved by the Bell and Sex and the City.

Carol Lawrence
Carol Lawrence: Broadway Star & Allegretti's Ex-Wife.

Allegretti began work on the children's television show as a set painter in the early days of its creation. He stepped in to create a replacement puppet when a professional's work dissatisfied the programme's creators.

From then on, he made, animated and voiced Mr. Bunny Rabbit and Mr. Moose and gave life to Dennis the Apprentice, Miss Frog, Mr. Whispers, Dancing Bear, Grandfather Clock, Uncle Ralph. With his unique skills and ability to entertain, he was the voice of Aniforms puppet TV Fred (a live-action on-screen puppet that appeared behind a balckboard), and was the artist behind the Magic Drawing Board.

Captain Kangaroo, with host Bob Keeshan at the helm as the titular Captain, ran for more than thirty years after its debut episode in 1955. Allegretti would also appear in films as an actor, such as 1981's Prince of the City alongside Treat Williams, and 1982's Author! Author! With Al Pacino.

It is not reported whether Mr. Allegretti had any children or current partner.