The Heroes family is in mourning today: Sunday, August 12, fan favorite artist and HeroesCon regular Mike Wieringo suffered a heart attack and passed away. Mike was the artist behind many popular runs on big-name characters like Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, Flash, and many more. He was also the co-creator, along with writer and close friend Todd Dezago, of Tellos. He was just 44 years old.
The unbelievable news of Mike's death overnight was the first thing I heard this morning—it’s still impossible to accept. He was a fan at the 1985 Heroes Convention, his first one, and I had the opportunity to meet him that year. He was of course an aspiring young artist, and I thought he showed a lot of promise. He never missed another con after that first trip. I watched him work on his art from year to year, and was so proud of him when he got those first independent jobs; then practically overnight he was a pro. His art took on a life of its own, and besides his artistic talents, he became one of the most universally respected and loved creators in the industry. And at the same time, Mike was becoming a part of our/my family. He was like a brother or a son to me, and established himself as firmly with my staff and the fans. He would have done anything for me—and many times, did--and I would have for him. That’s one of the things that being a family means, doing things for one another out of love.
In many ways, Mike embodies everything that I love about comics; in a very real way, he represents our closest friends and "family" members. When we refer to the HeroesCon "family", it's Mike Wieringo that we're talking about. When we say that we're excited to see everybody this summer, it's Mike Wieringo that we can't wait to see. And when we talk about how much we love and cherish the many pro's and fans that make what we do possible, it's Mike Wieringo that we're loving and cherishing.
And next year, when we come together again and remember the friends we've lost, it'll be Mike Wieringo that we're missing. I am proud to have known Mike for the past 22 years and to have called him friend and brother. Thanks for the wonderful art, support and memories, and most of all, for your friendship. Rest in peace, Mike.