Comic book artist Ernie Colón has passed away.
Ernie Colón (Ernesto Colón Sierra de Cordobes y Lopez)
July 13, 1031 – August 8, 2019
ME: If I’m not mistaken, your complete name is Ernesto Sierra de Cordobes Y Lopez Colón , isn’t it? Can you explain to our readers its origin?
ERNIE: My name is Ernesto Colo’n Sierra. Sierra is my mother’s maiden name. In Hispanic countries, the woman does not lose her name when a child is born. However, that is not my last name–it is Colo’n. So, to avoid confusion, I dropped the Sierra. As to that long name–it was a joke that has followed me through the years. Cordobe’s is my granma’s name and Lopez my father’s.
On Friday August 8 the notification was posted on Facebook:
I’m posting today with a heavy heart. The extraordinary Ernie Colón passed away yesterday afternoon in his home at the age of 88, surrounded by family, after over a year battling — and I mean battling — cancer. He did things on his own terms. The legacy he leaves behind is astonishing; a 60+ years career in comics, not to mention the work he did in other mediums including painting, writing, sculpting… I don’t think there was anything he couldn’t do. He loved to create — he was always creating. When people asked if he was “still drawing,” he said, “No idea what else I would be doing, since I would draw even when not paid for it. (half the story of my life).”
Long time comic book artist, Ernie also delved into illustration, animation and comic strips. Not just an artist, Ernie also edited, wrote, colored, and lettered comics. He began with U.S. comics in the 1960s and later contributed to all the major comic book companies as well as a number of independents.
The profiles mention his Spycat comic strip, but he drew a couple other comic strips for short periods.
In the 1950s he briefly assisted on the Joe Palooka comic strip.
ME: What was you first paying job?
ERNIE: I was hired by Ham Fisher to ink in the backgrounds of a popular Sunday newspaper strip of the day–“Joe Palooka”. It was a great thrill and opportunity. Unfortunately, it was short-lived–Mr. Fisher committed suicide within a month. My more morbid friends attributed this tragedy to the quality of my work.
ME: What year would this Joe Palooka assignment be?
ERNIE: Don’t recall–shortly after graduating high school–that was 1950.
[note: Ham Fisher died in 1955]
Ernie ghosted the art on Star Hawks from January 8 to February 4, 1979.
Then he drew (with Serc Soc and Alfredo Alcala) an episode of the Star Trek comic strip from May 9 to July 2, 1983.
And here’s the Dick Siegel and Ernie Colón Spycat from Weekly World News that ran May 9, 2005 to August 20, 2007 (when the Weekly World News shut down):