Marvel Comics Artist John Romita Sr. Dies at 93
John Romita Sr., a very important person in Marvel Comics’ history has passed away at 93 years old. He died in his sleep on June 12, 2023. His son, who is also a comics artist, John Romita Jr. confirmed the sad news with a statement, “I say this with a heavy heart. My father passed away peacefully in his sleep. He is a legend in the art world and it would be my honor to follow in his footsteps. Please keep your thoughts and condolences here out of respect for my family. He was the greatest man I ever met.”
I say this with a heavy heart, My father passed away peacefully in his sleep. He is a legend in the art world and it would be my honor to follow in his footsteps. Please keep your thoughts and condolences here out of respect for my family.
He was the greatest man I ever met. pic.twitter.com/Pe2K3ywbWX
— John Romita JR (@JrRomita) June 14, 2023
Romita Sr. was best known for co-creating characters such as Wolverine, Mary Jane Watson (he once said that he modeled Mary Jane after actress Ann-Margret), and the Punisher. He split his career between Marvel Comics (previously Timely Comics) and its rival DC Comics.
He started working in comics in the ’40s, with one of his first pieces being in the series Famous Funnies. In 1966, he worked closely with Stan Lee on The Amazing Spider-Man series and introduced Mary Jane Watson and Kingpin. Unfortunately, he often feuded with Lee and it led to him working on other projects.
In addition to co-creating Spider-Man characters, he worked on Vulture, Hammerhead, Shocker, Robbie Robertson, George Stacy, Bullseye, Luke Cage, and the Hobgoblin. It seems as if villains and sad stories were his specialty as he also helped create the tragic storyline “The Night Gwen Stacy Died.” Many of his comic characters went on to be featured in movies and television.
Romita Sr. was inducted into the Eisner Awards Hall of Fame in 2002 and the Inkwell Awards Hall of Fame in 2020. For comic fans, he truly was one of the greats with his hand in so many classics.
He is survived by his wife, Virginia (the two were childhood sweethearts and also worked at Marvel together), and sons Romita Jr. and Victor.