- Associated Press - Friday, July 8, 2011

CHILLICOTHE, OHIO (AP) - Allan Eckert, playwright of the outdoor drama “Tecumseh!” that has drawn millions to central Ohio since 1973, has died.

Anthony Stephens of the Jesse Stuart Foundation that published many of Eckert’s works, said the historian and author died Thursday at his home in Corona, Calif. He was 80.

The drama about the Shawnee leader, performed annually in Chillicothe, was adapted from Eckert’s book “The Frontiersmen.”

Eckert also wrote for the Emmy-winning “Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom” series. His children’s book, “Incident at Hawk’s Hill,” won a Newbery Honor award in 1972 and was made into a television movie by Walt Disney Productions.

A U.S. Air Force veteran, Eckert was born in Buffalo, N.Y., and raised in the Chicago area. He attended the University of Dayton and Ohio State.

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