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'SpongeBob' creator Stephen Hillenburg dies at 57

LOS ANGELES (AP) - "SpongeBob SquarePants" creator Stephen Hillenburg has died at age 57.
  
Nickelodeon says Hillenburg died Monday of Lou Gehrig's disease, also known as ALS.
  
Hillenburg conceived, wrote, produced and directed the animated series that began in 1999 and went on to spawn hundreds of episodes, movies and a Broadway show.


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