Revered comic books creator and man behind Wolverine, Len Wein dies aged 69

Writer, editor and artist revitalised dozens of popular characters as well as creating his own


Len Wein, the comic book writer and artist best known for his pivotal work on Marvel’s X-Men books and devising DC Comics’ pioneering eco-hero Swamp Thing, has died aged 69. He had suffered ill-health for some time, undergoing major heart surgery in 2015.

Wein was a comics super-fan long before he was a comics creator.  

In a 2003 Comics Bulletin interview, he said that he was ‘a very sickly kid.’

“While I was in the hospital at age seven, my dad brought me a stack of comic books to keep me occupied. And I was hooked. When my eighth grade art teacher, Mr. Smedley, told me he thought I had actual art talent, I decided to devote all my efforts in that direction in the hope that I might someday get into the comics biz.

Working first at Marvel and later at DC Comics, Wein had a hand in some of the key developments in later superhero lore, including the creation of The X-Men’s hugely popular clawed brawler Wolverine, who has appeared in nine feature films to date.

As an editor, Wein also worked on the hugely influential Alan Moore-Dave Gibbons series Watchmen, which also went on to spawn a major feature film.

Mr Wein and his wife Christine Valada lost their California home, as well as their beloved family dog, in a fire in 2009. Christine later appeared on the US TV gameshow Jeopardy! and won over $60,000 which she vowed to use to help replace some of the property the couple had lost.

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