<i>Playboy</i> Cartoon Editor Michelle Urry Dies

Michelle Urry, Playboy’s longtime cartoons editor, passed away on Sunday at her home in Manhattan. She was 66. Urry, who has filled the position at the magazine since the early 1970’s, succumbed to a battle with ocular melanoma.

As part of her job, Urry sorted through over a 1,000 scandalous cartoons every week to come up with the handful that would eventually appear in the monthly magazine. A recent article in the New York Times said that Urry’s taste was “seasoned by a girlhood of reading comic books.”

The report went on to say that Brian Walker, curator of the 1984 exhibition of Playboy cartoons at the Museum of Cartoon Art, wrote that “perhaps with the exception of The New Yorker, Playboy has been the only publication to maintain excellence in the field.”

A native of Canada, Urry attended the University of Southern California where she studied English. After graduating, Urry moved to Chicago. She went in for an interview at Playboy, but was initially offered a secretarial job. Urry quickly moved up to assistant on cartoons, and then became the cartoons editor. She had a little help, as she said in a 1971 interview with the National Observer, from “an inordinarily dirty mind.

“I don’t think [Hugh Hefner] expected that kind of bonus.”

Urry is survived by her husband, Alan R. Trustman, a screenwriter, and her son, Caleb Urry.