Jan Berenstain, who wrote and illustrated the beloved Berenstain Bears books with her husband Stan, has died at age 88. She suffered a stroke on Thursday and died on Friday, according to her son Mike Berenstain.
Stan and Jan met on their first day of art school in 1941 when they were both just 18 years old. They published their first Berenstain Bears book, The Big Honey Hunt, in 1962; since then, more than 300 Berenstain books have been published in more than 23 languages. After Stan Berenstain died in 2005 at the age of 82, Mike Berenstain has collaborated with his mother on more recent titles, some of which have covered modern issues like online safety. “Every day she was very productive,” Mike Berenstain told the Associated Press. “She was working on two books and had been doing illustrations until the day before she passed away.”
Inspired by the Berenstain children, and later, the grandchildren, the Berenstain Bears books followed the adventures of Mama Bear, Papa Bear, Brother Bear, and Sister Bear. More than 260 million copies have been printed.
I’ll always remember The Berenstain Bears and Too Much Junk Food. What were some of your favorites?