Very Hungry Caterpillar author Eric Carle dies aged 91
Carle's storybook sold over 50 million copies worldwide.
Eric Carle, the author and illustrator of the hugely popular children's book The Very Hungry Caterpillar has died at the age of 91.
Carle's official Instagram page announced his passing.
The statement read: "It is with heavy hearts that we share that Eric Carle, author and illustrator of The Very Hungry Caterpillar and many other beloved classics, passed away on Sunday, May 23rd at the age of 91.
"When asked why he thinks The Very Hungry Caterpillar has remained popular for so long, Carle said, "I think it is a book of hope. children need hope. You, little insignificant caterpillar can grow up into a beautiful butterfly and fly into the world with your talent.'"
The statement continued: "Thank you, Eric Carle, for sharing your great talent with so many generations of young readers."
Carle first published the storybook in 1969 and has since sold over 50 million copies. It follows the journey of a caterpillar before emerging as a butterfly. To this day, The Very Hungry Caterpillar remains a staple on children's bookshelves all around the globe.
Additionally, Carle penned and illustrated over 70 books, including The Very Busy Spider and The Very Lonely Firefly.
He got his start in illustration by working on Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? in 1967.
Born in New York in 1929, Carle moved with his family to Germany when he was just six years old. There, he survived the bombing of Stuttgart. He attempted to avoid military service until he was conscripted into digging trenches in western Germany.
In the 1950s, he returned to New York, and was later drafted into the US army.
Though he rarely talked about his experiences growing up in Nazi Germany, he said that he preferred to use bright, soothing colours as a contrast to the grim colours of war and camouflage.