Over the weekend it was reported that comic book legend Nick Cardy passed away. Mr. Cardy was a member of the Will Eisner Hall of Fame for his seminal work on such titles as Aquaman, Teen Titans, Bat Lash, and his numerous cover designs. He was the artist for both the first Aquaman and Teen Titans ongoing series, in addition to being the artist to introduce Wonder Girl to the Teen Titans roster. Mr. Cardy’s work helped define the look and feel of many classic DC characters. In 1943, Mr. Cardy was drafted into World War II where he would receive two Purple Heart awards.
I met Mr. Cardy at the 2013 Florid SuperCon, held in Miami. He gave an intimate talk to a small group of fans that felt more like spending time with your grandfather than a typical comic panel. During his panel he talked extensively about his experience in the war, as well as his fondness for his Aquaman and Bat Lash work. His stories were humorous and sincere, as I imagine he was his entire life. He didn’t tell the typical war stories, rather his involved being shipped around by commanders and generals that needed things drawn. During the war, Mr. Cardy always had a sketchbook and pencils with him; whether they were eating, or in the battlefield, he never went anywhere without his sketch pad. At one point during his service, Mr. Cardy was called upon to drive a tank. He quickly discovered that driving a tank, especially turning a tank, is not easy, at all. According to Mr. Cardy, there are now multiple buildings in Germany with chunks missing due to his tank driving skills. Throughout his discussion he was humble and grateful for the attendance, and seemed surprised that there were even a few teenagers in the room. Meeting Nick Cardy was a great honor and a definite highlight of my day at SuperCon. It’s a shame that he will not be there this year, he will truly be missed.