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Walter Crawford Kelly, Jr. (August 25, 1913 – October 18, 1973), better known as Walt Kelly, was an American animator and cartoonist, best known for the classic comic strip, Pogo. He won the National Cartoonists Society's Reuben Award in 1951 for Cartoonist of the Year, and their Silver T-Square Award in 1972, which is given to persons having "demonstrated outstanding dedication or service to the Society or the profession."

Walt Kelly was born of Irish-American heritage in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Walter Crawford Kelly, Sr. and Genevieve (née MacAnnula) Kelly. When he was two years old, the family moved to Bridgeport, Connecticut. After graduating from Warren Harding High School in 1930, Kelly worked at odd jobs until he was hired as a crime reporter on the Bridgeport Post. He also took up cartooning and illustrated a biography of fellow Bridgeport native P. T. Barnum. Kelly was extremely proud of his journalism pedigree and considered himself a newspaper man as well as a cartoonist.

Kelly became close friends with fellow cartoonists Milton Caniff and Al Capp, and the three occasionally referred to each other in their strips.

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