Garry Leach, 2000 AD, Judge Dredd, Marvelman Artist, Dies At 67

2000 AD artist Garry Leach, who served as the first artist on writer Alan Moore's legendary revival of Marvelman, has passed away, according to a statement from 2000 AD. He was 67 years old, and while no cause of death is known, his passing was characterized as unexpected, implying he was in good health. Leach, who was born in 1954 and attended Central St Martin's College, began his comics career in 1978, inking a Dan Dare story. He would go on to work on high profile projects like M.A.C.H.1 and Judge Dredd for the British publisher before finding his place in the history books alongside Moore in the early 1980s.

Leach also provided art for 2000 AD's space war series The V.C.s, from writer Gerry Finley-Day, which centered on "Vacuum Cleaners," a hard-bitten crew of a space patrol ship battling the alien menace of The Geeks. While Leach was not the sole or even the first artist, his run was memorable and acclaimed.

"While there was an intensity to his action sequences and stunning imagination in his designs, he also brought wonderful touches of whimsey – whether it was the harlequin-turned-hippie computer 'Brother' in The V.C.s, the nose-sucking plants of 'Future Shocks: Bloomin' Cold', or Dredd's striped socks in 'Ten Years On,'" 2000 AD wrote in their memoriam for Leach. "Although he never had his own signature series in our pages, Garry was one of the artists who helped define 2000 AD's first golden age. His imagination and talent leapt from every page and brought a confident dynamism to series such as The V.C.s and Judge Dredd."

"I'm saddened to hear about the passing of Garry Leach, one of Britain's greatest comic artists," said Swamp Thing and The Invisibles artist Chris Weston via Twitter.

"Sorry to learn that Garry Leach has passed away," added Watchmen artist Dave Gibbons. "A meticulous draftsman and always good company."

Our sympathies go out to Leach's family, friends, fans, and colleagues during this difficult time.