Word comes to CBR News Sunday morning that Gene Colan, the artist best known for his work on "Howard the Duck," "Daredevil" and what many consider to be Marvel's finest horror series of all time, "Tomb of Dracula," as well as a multitude of other classic comic book stories and characters, is suffering from kidney failure and was admitted to a hospital last week as his health continues to decline.

Gene's wife Adrienne sent out an email detailing Gene's current situation this past Saturday evening:

"My darling, sweet, handsome and brilliantly gifted husband's liver is failing. The complications are very nasty. This week it's fluid retention and encephalitis. He's on powerful meds now to diminish the symptoms. He sleeps a lot and has very little energy. He wants you all to know how badly he wanted to attend the convention. He so seriously wanted to see you all and shoot the breeze."

"Not sure how long we have left together, but our family whole and we'll be taking this sad journey together and nearby."

Blogger 20th Century Danny Boy has the full letter here.

Reaction from the comic book industry has been swift and supportive, with writer Clifford Meth already arranging a charity auction for Gene and his family. Stan Lee, Neil Gaiman, Mark Evanier and Peter David are among the comic book celebrities who have already donated items for the auction, with more expected to join the lineup in the days ahead.

CBR News will continue to follow this story and bring you information as we receive it.

Discuss Gene and his career with other fans in CBR's Classic Comics forum.

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