Harvey and Eisner award winner Joe Kubert, co-creator of characters like Sergeant Rock and Ragman, passed away this morning at age 85. He is probably best remember for his work on the Silver Age update of the classic DC character, Hawkman. Kubert had a long history with DC, having worked as an artist for the company stretching back over 7 decades.
In 1976 he founded the Kubert School, a technical college specializing the skills and principles of comic book art, based in Dover, NJ. Kubert, and both of his comic artist sons were instructors at the school, whose alumni includes Rags Morales, Rick Veitch,Shane Davis, Dave Dorman, Scott Kolins, Steve Lieber, and of course both Kubert brothers.
While Kubert had slowed down in the 70s and 80s to focus on the school and choosing to write and draw The Adventures of Yaakov and Yosef for Tzivos Hashem, the Lubavitch children’s organization, and Moshiach Times magazine. The stories were faith based, based on biblical events, but were not stories from the Bible.
Kubert returned to work for DC in recent years, include illustrating several recent Sgt. Rock miniseries, like Sgt. Rock: Between Hell and a Hard Place written by Brian Azzarello, and Sgt. Rock: The Prophecy, which Kubert wrote as well as drew. Kubert, working with his son, Adam, contributed a new Sgt. Rock story for Wednesday Comics, in 2009. His most recent work was also with one of his sons, inking Andy Kubert’s pencils on Before Watchman: Nite Owl, written by J. Michael Straczynski.
Kubert was inducted into the Harvey Awards’ Jack Kirby Hall of Fame in 1997, where he also received and Harvey Award for his work on Fax from Sarajevo, a non-fiction book telling the story of European comics agent Ervin Rustemagić. Rustemagić and his family spent two-and-a-half years in a ruined building after their home was destroyed during the Serbian siege of Sarajevo, only able to communicate with the outside world via fax (when they could get service). The book also won an Eisner Award that year and in 1998 he was also inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame. Over the course of his long career he also won 3 Alley Awards and 2 National Cartoonist Society Awards.
Joe Kubert had 5 children, including sons Adam and Andy. His wife and co-founder of the Kubert School, Muriel, passed away in 2008, at the age of 77.
All of us here at ComicBooked.com have the Kubert family in our minds and prayers at this time.