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Arthur Dana Fradon



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Arthur Dana Fradon, died peacefully surrounded by his loving family at his home in Woodstock, N.Y., October 3, 2019. He was formerly of Newtown.

Dana, as he was called, was born in Chicago in 1922. As the child of immigrants during the Great Depression, he suffered through extreme poverty throughout his youth. His family was saved by Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, which put food on their table and allowed him to receive a great education. The New Deal also informed and steered the course of his life.

After serving in the Army and Air Force in World War II, Dana attended the Art Institute of Chicago and the Art Students League of New York, where he met and married comic illustrator Ramona Fradon.

He wanted to pursue a career in political cartooning and landed his first contract with the New Yorker magazine in the late 1940s. Dana went on to become one of the magazine’s top tier political cartoonists for four decades, being one of the all-time most reprinted cartoonists of his era. He also sold to the Saturday Evening Post, Playboy, and other magazines. After retirement, he published a series of award-winning children’s books with Dalton on medieval history with a character being named for Dana.

Fradon was extremely active in Connecticut politics, having worked side-by-side with Bill Clinton, among others, who were fresh out of law school. Dana’s political efforts helped to shape the Democratic Party in Connecticut at the time, focusing on civil rights and ending the Vietnam War.

Dana Fradon was a generous mentor to many students and friends and a loving and dedicated father to his only child, Amy. He loved antiques, history, art, politics, food, old movies, and good conversation. He dedicated his life to his career and social justice through his cartooning, and he believed more than anything in a just government which would take care of everyone with no one left behind. He died hoping for that.

All who knew you will miss you, Dad. May you find peace, safety, and love wherever you are.

Funeral Arrangements are under the guidance of Lasher Funeral Home Inc, Woodstock, N.Y., and will be held privately.

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