As most of us have been fortunate to get a moment with Stan Lee on his farewell comic convention tour this past year, there was a bit of sad news that came out today that will let us know that his time with us is closing. His wife of 69 years has passed.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, sources say that she suffered a stroke this week and has never recovered.
To be married 69 years is a testament to anyone and Stan was a tiger who hit the jackpot.
Lee recounted how he and his wife met in this account last year:
“When I was young, there was one girl I drew; one body and face and hair. It was my idea of what a girl should be. The perfect woman. And when I got out of the Army, somebody, a cousin of mine, knew a model, a hat model at a place called Laden Hats. He said, ‘Stan, there’s this really pretty girl named Betty. I think you’d like her. She might like you. Why don’t you go over and ask her to lunch.’ Blah, blah, blah.
“So I went up to this place. Betty didn’t answer the door. But Joan answered, and she was the head model. I took one look at her — and she was the girl I had been drawing all my life. And then I heard the English accent. And I’m a nut for English accents! She said, ‘May I help you?’ And I took a look at her, and I think I said something crazy like, ‘I love you.’ I don’t remember exactly. But anyway, I took her to lunch. I never met Betty, the other girl. I think I proposed to [Joan] at lunch.”
In those days, the quickest way to get divorced was to move to Nevada and stay for six weeks to establish residency. Soon after Joan arrived in Reno, Stan received a letter from her addressed to “Jack,” and that worried him.
“Now I’m not the smartest guy in world,” recalled Lee. “I know my name isn’t ‘Jack.’ And so why did she write ‘Dear Jack?’ Maybe I better go to Reno and see what’s going on. I got there and she was waiting for me. And there’s three guys with her. They all look like John Wayne. Big Western guys! Rugged! And I get off the plane fresh from New York with my little pork pie hat and a little scarf and my gloves. And she’s with me. I thought, ‘I don’t have a chance.’ Luckily, I had a chance.”
This is really a sad occasion for many of us comic fans as we all realize that Stan Lee hasn’t been in the best of health but we offer our condolences in this time of loss.
Hang in there Stan.