Farewell to the Original Voice of Charlie Brown

Family, agent confirm Peter Robbins' death at 65
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 26, 2022 12:02 PM CST
Farewell to the Original Voice of Charlie Brown
In this Jan. 23, 2013 file photo, Peter Robbins appears for his arraignment in San Diego, on charges of stalking and threatening his former girlfriend and a plastic surgeon.   (John Gibbins/U-T San Diego via AP, File)

The original voice of Charlie Brown has died at age 65. Peter Robbins took his own life last week, his family said in a statement to Fox 5. His agent, Dylan Novak, tells TMZ that Robbins had checked himself into a mental hospital soon after Christmas but departed Jan. 18, despite hospital staff requesting that he stay longer. Born Louis G. Nanasi in Los Angeles in 1956, per Deadline, he began voicing Charlie Brown as a child in 1963 but had given up the role by 1970. The later part of his life was marked by mental health struggles and time behind bars. He was sentenced to more than four years in prison in 2015 after making criminal threats, including against San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore.

At the time, he said he was suffering from bipolar disorder and paranoid schizophrenia. Two years earlier, he'd pleaded guilty to threatening his ex-girlfriend and stalking her plastic surgeon. He'd reportedly paid for a breast enhancement, then demanded a refund. "I would recommend to anybody that has bipolar disorder to take it seriously because your life can turn around in the span of a month, like it did to me," he told Fox 5 after his release from prison in 2019. "I came out of prison and I'm a better person for it. I'm much more humble and grateful and thankful that I lived through the experience."

You can hear him in 1965's A Charlie Brown Christmas; 1966's It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown; and the 1969 feature film A Boy Named Charlie Brown. He also appeared in later specials including It's Your 20th Television Anniversary, Charlie Brown and You Don't Look 40, Charlie Brown, per Variety. He carried the beloved Peanuts character with him: He had a tattoo of Charlie Brown and Snoopy on his arm, per Fox 5. He also guest starred on TV shows including Blondie and The Munsters in the 1960s and '70s, and worked as a DJ, per Deadline. (Those in need of help can call the free National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.)

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