John Paul Leon (1972-2021)

Photo by Luigi Novi

Die Woche konnte kaum schlechter beginnen. Wie am Montag in mehreren Social-Media-Beiträgen aus dem engeren Freundes- und Angehörigenkreis von Comickünstler John Paul Leon bekanntgegeben wurde, ist der bekannte Zeichner am vergangenen Sonntag im Alter von nur 49 Jahren verstorben. Leon litt an einer Krebserkrankungen und hat den Kampf gegen die Krankheit nun nach über 14 Jahren seit der Diagnose verloren.

In seiner Karriere war er u. a. an Reihen den „Robocop“ für Dark Horse Comics sowie „Earth X“, „The Further Adventures of Cyclops & Phoenix“ und „Challengers Of The Unknown“ beteiligt. Er zeichnete zahlreiche markante Cover für diverse Marvel- und DC-Comics-Titel, zuletzt erhielt er vor allem für seine Arbeit an „Batman: Creature of the Night“, zusammen mit Kurt Busiek, viel Beachtung. Im Deutschen erschien der Comic unter dem Titel „Batman: Kreatur der Nacht“ bei Panini.

Leons Familie sah sich aufgrund der hohen finanziellen Kosten durch die Krankheit und Leons eigenem Wunsch, eine Absicherung für die Ausbildung seiner 17-jährigen Tochter erzielen zu können, dazu gezwungen, eine gofundme-Aktion zu starten. Dazu veröffentlichte die Familie folgendes Statement:

JOHN PAUL LEON (1972-2021)

John Paul Leon, one of the most revered and masterful artists and storytellers in the comic book industry, passed away Sunday morning at l0am, May 2nd, 2021, after a 14-year battle with cancer. He was surrounded by family and friends in his last moments, fighting for his life, much like the many superhero stories he crafted over his celebrated career spanning three decades.

John Paul’s bold and dramatic work was best exemplified in the critically-acclaimed EARTH X, a maxi-series which redefined the Marvel Comics universe; as the original artist on STATIC, which laid the foundation for the Milestone/DC Comics universe; his creator-owned THE WINTERMEN series about cold war era super soldiers; and BATMAN CREATURE OF THE NIGHT, a passion project deconstructing the iconic dark knight.

He started drawing COMICS professionally at the age of 19, while he was studying illustration at School of Visual Arts in New York City, on ROBOCOP PRIME SUSPECT for Dark Horse Comics. JP’s first published work however debuted in the pages of TSR DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS when he was a high school student at the New World School of the Arts, in Miami.

While at SVA, John Paul studied under one of his childhood idols, Walter Simonson. „I am honored to have JP’s RAGNAROK cover framed and hanging in our front hallway,“ says Walter, It’s a constant reminder to do better every day and to try to make myself into the best artist I can.“

John Paul’s work was impactful and expressive, and in his personal life he was very private and humble. To him, his ultimate goal was to build a body of work that would earn the respect of his peers. To his peers and friends, it was how he lived as a human that was most inspirational. As a teenager, whenever you rode with him in his car, he forbid the radio being on, so that you could appreciate to the true sound of the engine.

JP is survived by his wife, daughter and older brother.

In lieu of gifts, a GOFUNDME page has been set up to fund his daughter’s future educational pursuits…

Dieser Beitrag erschien zuerst auf: bizzaroworldcomics.de

Emanuel Brauer ist Betreiber des Comic-Blogs bizzaroworldcomics.de, Autor für Comic.de und stellt 1/3 Sprechblase bei POW! – Ein ComicPodcast. Er lebt mit seiner Frau und seinen Kindern im Harz.