Indy comics icon, Marvel Comics legend “Fabulous” Flo Steinberg passed away

Best known as one of Marvel’s original bullpen members and an independent comics pioneer, Flo Steinberg has passed away Sunday morning. According to Larry Hama, who reported her death on his Facebook page.

I am grieved to report that ‘Fabulous’ Flo Steinberg passed away this morning after complications from a brain aneurism and metastatic lung cancer. She will be interred at the Jewish cemetery in Kerhonkson NY. We are making plans for a memorial in September or October. I will update on this page.

“Fabulous” Flo Steinberg, art by Jack Kirby

Steinberg’s career in comics began in the 1960s as Marvel’s only employee besides Stan Lee. She was the company’s first receptionist, answered letters, managed the Merry Marvel Merry Marvel Marching Society, and making sure the company ran smoothly. She is considered one of the key people in growing Marvel into one of “the big two” in comic book publishing. And many times, she has been featured in comics along with the Marvel Bullpen as herself.

She eventually left Marvel. After a short break from the comics industry, she returned to New York City to help run Captain Company, the mail-order division of the horror-comics magazine firm, Warren Publishing.

 

From here she published her own creation, Big Apple Comix in the 1970s. The revolutionary anthology comic allowed mainstream comic creators, like Neal Adams, Denny O’Neill, Archie Goodwin, and Wally Wood to produce alternative stories. It was considered to be one one of the pioneering comics that bridged the gap between underground and independent publishing. Critic Ken Jones, in a 1986 retrospective review, suggested that Big Apple Comix and Mark Evanier’s High Adventure may have been “the first true alternative comics”.

In later years, Steinberg returned to Marvel as a proofreader and made several convention appearances.

Marvel Comics released a statement on their website:

“We are incredibly saddened to hear of Flo Steinberg’s passing and send our deepest condolences to her friends and family. Flo has always been the heart of Marvel and a legend in her own right. She will be forever missed and always loved by all of us here at Marvel.”

Many in the comics community expressed their feelings online upon news of her death.

Collen Doran, writer/artist, including the Amazing Fantastic Incredible Stan Lee.

Tom Brevoort, editor, Marvel Comics.

Ryan Penagos, VP & executive editor, Marvel Digital.

Stephen Wacker, VP-Development, Marvel Television & New Media.

Kevin Panetta, writer.

Jim Lee, creator, co-publisher, DC Entertainment.

Scott Edelman, sci-fi and fantasy fiction writer wrote a series of heartfelt tweets remembering Steinberg.

Neil Kleid, graphic novelist.

Jim Steranko, writer/artist.

Smash Pages extends our condolences to the family and loved ones of Flo Steinberg. She was a comics icon and will be missed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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