Hello again, friends. Kate here to bring you up to speed with what happened in comics last week that you may have missed because, you know, pandemic.
The week started off with very sad news about Robson Rocha, who passed away due to complications from COVID-19. There were some very moving tributes to be found on social media. Jim Lee posted these words on Twitter:
It is with great sadness that I share the heartbreaking news that DC artist Robson Rocha has passed away. An incredibly talented young artist from Brazil—Robson started at DC just 11 years ago and always impressed me with the amazing energy and fluidity of his figurework, pic.twitter.com/tenDOEILAJ
— Jim Lee (@JimLee) July 11, 2021
Kelly Sue DeConnick also wrote about her grief in a newsletter earlier this week.
Robson Rocha died from complications related to COVID. He was 41. He had a wife and a very young daughter. In an email he wrote me in January, a couple weeks after his diagnosis, he said, “I’m fine… But I can’t help but to feel extremely angry about it. I feel like I lost a war.”
I feel angry about it too. I’m angry at the universe, and at Bolsonaro.
The pandemic isn’t over. In the United States, with vaccination rates at about 48% we had another 35.5k cases diagnosed yesterday, and another 338 deaths. In Brazil, where less than 16% of their population has been able to get vaccinated, they had 52.7k new cases and 1,548. Every one of those numbers is a Robson. Every one of them is a person who was loved and needed and now is missed. There are so many holes in our world today. How do you even calculate the effects of that kind of radiant despair?
The week also ended sadly with the news that letterer Bill Tortolini had passed away.
My friend has died. You may know Bill Tortolini – he's lettered projects for Marvel, Image, and Dynamite, amongst others. Bill passed away suddenly last week, leaving behind his beloved family of a wife and three children. Please help them if you can.https://t.co/EPhvlvKVqO
— Simon Bowland (@SimonBowland) July 17, 2021
There is a GoFundMe set up in support of his family here.
Indigenous artist Jeffrey Veregge is still in the hospital, but finally seems to be on the mend according to the latest updates posted on his GoFundMe page. He is finally being released from the ICU after 26 days, but there is still so much healing to be done, and the GoFundMe for his family and medical expenses is still active.
It was also my dad’s birthday on July 13th. He passed away in 2016, but I still think of him on his birthday, so there was a lot of grief and grieving happening for me last week, so I will wrap up this week’s with two small news notes that are representative of my way of grieving.
First, let the people you care about know you appreciate them.
Second, don’t be that person who didn’t do something before they died just because they didn’t ever get around to it.
ShortBox’s August Mini-Grants are open for application. Apply.
Applications for August's round of ShortBox mini-grants are now open: three £200 grants available to independent cartoonists. Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org linking to your current site/portfolio, with 'mini-grant' as the subject. You *must* have a Paypal, deadline 13th August.
— ShortBox (@Short_Box) July 13, 2021
Take care of yourselves, everyone.