Veteran comic book artist Steve Dillon, celebrated for his work on "Preacher," "The Punisher" and "Hellblazer," has passed away. No details are yet available.
The news, which circulated this morning on social media, was confirmed minutes ago by his younger brother, cartoonist Glyn Dillon:
Sad to confirm the death of Steve, my big brother and my hero. He passed away in the city he loved (NYC). He will be sorely missed. Cheers x
— glyn dillon (@glyn_dillon) October 22, 2016
Born in 1962 in Luton, Bedfordshire, England, Dillon made his professional debut at age 16 in the Marvel UK anthology "Hulk Weekly," and went on to draw the Nick Fury strip. He later worked on "Doctor Who Magazine," where he created the character Abslom Daak, and the "Warrior" anthology, and contributed regularly throughout the 1980s to 2000AD, illustrating such strips as "Judge Dredd," "Rogue Trooper" and "Bad Company." With the late artist Brett Ewins, Dillon also launched the magazine "Deadline."
Dillon first attracted attention in the United States with the 1989 DC Comics miniseries "Skreemer," with Peter Milligan and Ewins, before moving on to a nearly two-year run on "Animal Man."
However, Dillon is best known for his collaborations with writer Garth Ennis, beginning with Vertigo's "Hellblazer" and continuing with the critically acclaimed "Preacher" and Marvel's "The Punisher." Dillon's other credits include Marvel's "Wolverine: Origins," "Bullseye: Greatest Hits," "PunisherMAX" and "Thunderbolts."
Tributes to Dillon have filled Twitter this morning, with Warren Ellis calling him "a giant," Antony Johnston referring to him as "one of the best pure storytellers in the business," and Ed Brubaker characterizing his death as "a tragic loss, not just to comics, but especially to comics."
Update: Vertigo this afternoon tweeted its own tribute to Dillon:
We lost a giant among creators and artists today. Steve Dillon will be missed by us all here at DC and Vertigo. pic.twitter.com/ZpYVQBgwwf
— Vertigo Comics (@vertigo_comics) October 22, 2016