Last week I received, from his wife Ginni, the sad news that Mel Crawford had passed away peacefully on Monday, Feb. 23. He had been in a long-term care facility for about the last year.
Mel started out as a teenage artist on the first issue of Joke Comics (March, 1942) and drew the main feature called “The Three T’s.” Mel’s career in comics was interrupted when he enlisted in the navy during World War II. After the war he worked for Bomac, the largest engraving and printing organization in Toronto where he met a younger Gerry Lazare who began there as an apprentice in the late forties. Mel left for opportunities in the States in 1949 and found a brilliant and profitable career in illustrating Golden Books and comic books (most notably featuring the Hanna Barbera characters) before moving on to fine art and water colours. Please look at my column on Mel Crawford from about a year-and-a-half ago to get an idea of the brilliant career left in his wake.