Lee Mendelson dies, brought ‘Charlie Brown Christmas’ to TV

LOS ANGELES — Lee Mendelson, the producer who brought “A Charlie Brown Christmas” to television in 1965 and wrote the lyrics to its song, “Christmas Time Is Here,” died on Christmas day. 

Mendelson’s son Jason tells The Associated Press, The Hollywood Reporter CNN and other news outlets Friday that his father died at age 86 in his California home after a long cancer battle. 

Lee Mendelson, who won 12 Emmys, headed a team that included “Peanuts” author Charles Schulz and pianist Vince Guaraldi. Mendelson had said he wrote the lyrics to Guaraldi’s composition “Christmas Time Is Here” in about 15 minutes. It would help make the show a holiday classic.  

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