‘Courage the Cowardly Dog’ Voice Actress Thea White Dies at 81

Thea White Voice Actress Muriel Bagge
Facebook; Cartoon Network / Courtesy: Everett Collection

Veteran voice actress Thea White, best known for voicing the character Muriel Bagge on Cartoon Network’s Courage the Cowardly Dog, has died. She was 81.

The news of White’s passing was announced on early Saturday morning by her brother, John Zitzner. He wrote on Facebook that she died on Friday, July 30 at 11:05 am, two days after a second surgery related to liver cancer. White was diagnosed with liver cancer a number of months ago and had received treatment at the Cleveland Clinic.

Born on June 16, 1940, in Newark, New Jersey, White had been a professional actress for most of her life, starting on stage in her 20s before becoming a voice actress later in her career. She had also worked as a librarian and a personal assistant to actress/singer Marlene Dietrich.

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The actor was filming a movie when he passed away suddenly.

She is best remembered for her role on the animated series Courage the Cowardly Dog as Muriel, the elderly, kind-hearted Scottish woman who took Courage in when he was an abandoned puppy. White voiced Muriel in every episode of the series, which aired for four seasons from 1999 to 2002. She also voiced the character in various spin-offs, including the Cartoon Network Racing video game.

White reprised her role as Muriel for the upcoming crossover special, Straight Outta Nowhere: Scooby-Doo! Meets Courage the Cowardly Dog, which is expected to be released on September 14, 2021.

She is survived by her brothers Stewart and John Zitzner, as well as John’s wife Peg Zitzner, and her nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand-nephews. Her late husband, Andy White, who was a professional drummer and drummed on The Beatles’ songs “Love Me Do” and “P.S, I Love You.” died in 2015.