The Creator Of 'SpongeBob SquarePants' Has Died At Age 57
Sad news for our Nickelodeon family today...
Stephen Hillenburg, the creator of SpongeBob SquarePants has passed away at age 57.
"We are incredibly saddened by the news that Steve Hillenburg has passed away following a battle with ALS," Nickelodeon has said in a statement. "He was a beloved friend and a long-time creative partner to everyone at Nickelodeon, and our hearts go out to his entire family."
Stephen, who said he was suffering from the neurogenerative disease last year, began his career as a marine biology teacher in Southern California when he started drawing sea creatures as a way to teach students.
The first episode of SpongeBob SquarePants aired on TV in May of 1999. It's since gone on to win many awards, spin-off books, Hollywood movies and a Broadway musical...and has a place in all of our hearts.
"[Steve's] utterly original characters and the world of Bikini Bottom will long stand as a reminder of the value of optimism, friendship and the limitless power of imagination," Nickelodeon's statement read.
Our hearts go out to Steve's family and friends.