RIP Phil Lasorda

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We’ve received word that former Comico publisher, Phil Lasorda, passed away yesterday. In addition to running the company which published such titles as MAGE and THE ELEMENTALS, Lasorda was a creator himself, with the book AZ. No further details are available at this time.

Comments

  1. That’s too bad. Maybe now Andrew Rev will finally start publishing Elementals again.

  2. Lawson says:

    I’m sorry to hear that. I wasn’t familiar with Mr. Ladorda himself, but I remember Comico. The 1980s really had some fun indie publishers! Comico, Eclipse, Pacific, First and the rest. Good stuff.

  3. Rick Taylor says:

    Heidi,

    If you have any further information, please let me know. I’d like to attend services.
    I still live in the Philly area. I worked for Phil and know his family.

    Thanks,

    Rick

  4. michael says:

    Was he still working in comics at the time of his passing? Yes, I remember Comico.

  5. Diana Schutz says:

    Hi, Rick. Call Bob at DC. He was in touch with Phil’s girlfriend (or maybe she was his wife) Sam, and she was going to let him know if and when there would be a public service. Bob’s going to try to get there if he can. Being on the other side of the country and having just returned from Montreal, I can’t make it myself, but I wish I could.

    Diana

  6. What incredibly sad news. Comico was the first independent comic company I encountered when I was growing up. Mage, Elementals, Grendel and even their awesome Robocop and Johnny Quest series. They were Dark Horse back then.

    I even remember AZ.

    Sad news.

  7. Can’t believe I just wrote RoboCOP. It was ROBOTECH of course. Sorry about that.

  8. Kris Stacks says:

    I have fond memories reading Comico comics back in the ’80’s. It seems like I probably read just about everything they published,even the world of Ginger Fox. So I was pretty heart broken when they went under. I never met Mr. Lasorda or any one at Comico for that matter, but thanks non the less for many happy Saturday afternoons as a kid. Rest in Peace.

  9. I’m very sad to hear this news-Phil was a very important part of my professional life in comics- if not for him taking a chance on my still amateurish work back in ’83 I may never have gotten into this biz-a job which has become a huge part of my life these past 25 years.

    Phil and I never became close friends but we did work together on 3 issues of his book AZ-they were changing their books over from B & W to color and chose myself and my partner Rich Rankin to draw his series-those three 30 page issues never saw the light of day (thank goodness ;o) but they were a great training ground for me-i needed that time to hone my art and learn the discipline of monthly comic books-that time with Phil led to our doing the ROBOTECH MASTERS series for Comico.

    I will never ever forget his generosity to a guy who just wanted to draw comics.

    Farewell, Phil.

  10. Dennis La Sorda says:

    My brother died surrounded by family two days ago. We love and miss Phil. Thank you for the many thoughtful words regarding Phil. I will provide information on memorial services tomorrow.

    Sincerely, Dennis

  11. SHARON La Sorda says:

    Phil will be so missed! He was a talented artis. He loved fishing, his family and friends! He touched the lives of so many people through his comic strip, his art work,his comic book work, his wonderful laugh and his beautful smile. Our family will miss him so much. Thank you all for your kind words. It will wrap his family in love at this very hard time.

    Sharon

  12. Gerry Giovinco says:

    I first met Phil in 1977 at Bishop Kenrick High School. At the time I was aggressively developing my comic art and entrepreneurial skills by publishing a weekly 4 page comic developed around our school mascot entitled The Kenrick Knight which I mimeographed and sold to fellow students for a nickel each. Phil, a senior at the time, was a year ahead of me in school and friends with another schoolmate Vince Argondezzi who was the finest Jack Kirby clone you would ever find.
    Though I was in a different art class than the two of them we shared the same art teacher, Sister Marie Patrice , who noting our similar interests in comics, was quick to introduce us. Phil and Vince responded by creating a similar comic called Kaptain Kenrick which I also mimeographed and sold around school, our profits going back to Sister to support the art department. This collaboration would plant the seed for what would eventually become Comico.
    Phil and Vince along with their long time friend Aaron Keaton, who also went to Kenrick, were the first guys I had met that shared a mutual interest in creating comics. Aaron joined the Air Force, Phil went to Kutztown and Vince went to the local community college leaving me to finish high school. With Aaron stationed in Oklahoma Phil, Vince and I stayed in touch and managed to frequent the Creation Comic Conventions as regularly as we could. Each of us struggling in our own way to get a foot in the industry we loved so much, I had concocted a plan to self publish armed with an article from Free Enterprise Magazine that had touted the opportunities of the new Direct Market. Phil and Vince were natural choices for my partners.
    Those earliest days were some of the happiest memories I have of Comico, years before our first publication. We were three very young guys with very big dreams and no money. We spent most of our time hanging out, drawing in my basement, arguing over our favorite artists and planning our stories and our dreams at an all-night diner in Norristown. We were regulars there and every waitress knew us mostly thanks to Phil who was an incorrigible flirt at the time.
    Vince and I were your typical pencil-necked comic fans but Phil was a robust personable jock that had played on the high school football team and was a power lifter in college. I can’t speak for Vince, but for me Phil was evidence that you could be cool and still like comics. Phil was never shy, he wouldn’t think twice about asking the Pope if he could try on his beanie. When Phil walked into a room, he lit it up with his humor, his smile and his vivacious personality.
    As Comico became a reality, Phil was the fearless networker at conventions, even if our early work wasn’t taken seriously we were branded as fun guys mostly thanks to Phil and we had developed solid inroads with artists and distributors that would eventually lead to our success.
    By the time our first publication, Comico Pimer #1, was released Vince had already chosen to leave the partnership. Bill Cucinotta who attended the Philadelphia College of Art with me and other future Comico artists, Matt Wagner, Mike Leeke, and Dave Johnson filled the void in the partnership. The dynamics of the boy dreamers, however, seemed to change as did my relationship with Phil and though we continued as partners for a number of years our friendship unfortunately never survived.
    I haven’t spoken to Phil in nearly twenty years and now with the news of his death it is quite obvious that the loss is mine. I’ll never have the opportunity to sit with Phil at an all night diner alongside Vince, Cooch, and Dennis and be able to share fond memories of Comico in its heyday. Phil you are in my prayers. May your spirit soar to that inkwell in the sky.
    My sincerest sympathy to the entire LaSorda family from myself and my family especially my parents and my brothers who all have fond memories of Phil.

    Gerry

  13. Publishing with Comico was without a doubt one of the best experiences in my life.
    I was fortunate enough to share that time with Phil, Dennis Gerry and COMICO alumni.
    My condolences to Dennis, Terry, Joey and the rest of the LaSorda family.
    Phil, I hope that your journey is as awesome as the journey we shared.
    I’ll miss you,
    Bill

  14. John Licata says:

    I am still in shock upon hearing the news yesterday morning. Phil was my cousin, and over the years we got to have some pretty good times together. He would play basketball with me and the guys, and even coached me for a year in an East Norriton league. He was a great and very talented guy. He will be missed very much by myself and my family. It’s going to be really strange to not have him and his father Jimmy, coming over on Easter or Christmas to grab some pizzelles, or easter bread. I don’t want to give bad information out, but I believe the services will most likely be Tuesday and Wednesday. I know for sure the funeral luncheon will be Wednesday at The Mount Carmel Club, and myself and my bosses company, Raymond’s Catering will be providing the refreshments. God bless you Phil, you were definitely taken way too soon. My condolences also go out to the rest of the family.

  15. aaron q keaton says:

    Phil was my best friend through grade school and high school. We were alter boys at St. Patricks church and safetys(junior crossing guards) for St. Pat’s school. We shared love for comics,music, and mallow cups. I’m lost for words now, I’ve lost a brother.

  16. SHARON La Sorda says:

    Hello everyone, and again Thank You for all the heart felt stories!
    They are really wonderful and loving and sad and funny!! We have all lost someone so special.The following information is the about the services the family has planned. We hope you all can come and celebrate Phil’s life with us, for each and everyone of you has a story to share! And for those of you who can’t make the services we understand, but always keep Phil in your heart!

    Tuesday, July 8th from 6 to 8 pm A Mermorial Service is planned at Caramenico Funeral Home. The address is as follows: 401-405 East Main Street, Noriistown, Pa, 19401. Phone Number: 610-275-7777.

    The following morning, July 9th, at 10 A.M. a Church Service will be held at St. Patrick’s Church, The address is Dalkalb & Chestnut, Norristown, Pa. 19401.

    Thank You!

    Sincerely, The La Sorda’s

  17. Vincent Argondezzi says:

    I am so sorry to hear of Phil’s passing. In addition to a good conceptualizer and talented cartoonist and artist, he was one of the funniest, quickest wits that one could imagine. There are countless memories of the fun times and exciting creative landmarks that we three laid down at Comico, for the folks that came later at Comico, after I moved on to work elsewhere, and yes, as Phil, Gerry, and many others to follow consumated into a very much improved industry. You cannot talk about comics without mentioning that Phil and Gerry, with an honorable mention to me, and Cootch, Dennis, and Matt, and Willingham, and dozens upon dozens of other pros that contributed to Comico, helped change comics. It just is that way. Gerry used to say that the main animus for Comico, in those early days when the only thing we had to hang our hat on was my early involvement in DC’s internship with Dick Giordano, is that Gerry was the Brains, I was the Raw Talent, and Phil..well, Phil was the Heart and Soul that would cajole staggering talents like Steve Rude and Dave Stevens to work there, kept everyone laughing with a zest for the creative enterprise and spirit that Gerry and I and everyone associated with him will always cherish; he helped carry that whole thing over and made it part of American cultural history. Before Image and the others, there was Comico, and a very big part of the tranformation of the industry we all love was due to Phil, a big, lovable guy who was one of three somewhat nerdy schoolchums with a mutual Dream that we wouldn’t let die. Thanks, Phil, God Bless You, and rest in peace. And remember…never pet a burning dog…oh wait…there are no burning dogs in heaven.

    Vince

  18. Samantha Schmoll says:

    It is really wonderful to hear so many comments about Phil. He truly was gifted (artistically and socially). I have been lucky enough to spend 4 years with him, and anticipated spending the rest of my life with him as well. He could always bring a smile to my face with his little notes and drawings and was one of the most positive, upbeat people I’ve ever met. After his heart surgery 5 years ago he really made the most of his second chance at life. He was strong and brave and the only explanation I can come up with as to his leaving all of us here, is that someone “up there” must need him more that we do.

    l would love to hear more stories about Phil – and do hope anyone who can make the service or luncheon (Mt. Carmel Club), will.

    We will be burrying him at sea off the coast of Ocean City, MD, which was his wishes.

    Thanks again.

  19. Lori DeLuca-LaCava says:

    My sincerest sympathy to the entire LaSorda family from myself and my family especially my parents and my brothers who all have fond memories of Phil. He was a truly gifted artist with a great sense of humor. May he rest in peace.

    Lori

  20. Diana Schutz says:

    Reading all these reminiscences really takes me back. As Vince says, Phil was the “Heart and Soul” of Comico. He loved to have fun and to make people laugh, never taking himself too seriously in the process, and his big grin was infectious. This is such sad news. My heartfelt condolences to the LaSorda clan, especially Dennis and Joey, and to Phil’s dear Samantha.

    Diana

  21. Laura Baldasano says:

    To the LaSorda’s:
    I just found out about this today- I’m Karen LaSorda’s daughter, and Phil was my cousin. I love reading responses of those who really knew him. I haven’t seen him for years but I have great memories with him as a kid- I thought the fact that he was in comics was the coolest thing ever. I remember him as being “the fun one” when he would look after us, and he seemed younger then the other adults. I’m sad that I didn’t keep in touch, and my deepest sympathy for the LaSorda’s. And if any of you are close to Uncle Jimmy please give him a hug from me.
    Much love,
    Laura

  22. I never really met Phil in person, but I owe him (and the other Comico founders postig here) a sincere thanks for publishing my first color work and more importantly, for indirectly introducing me to lifelong pals Shelly Bond, Diana Schutz, Bob Schreck, Matt Wagner and Tim Sale. I loved those early Comico books and I was proud to be published among them.

    While on tour this past year, my play was booked into Norristown, PA, the former home of Comico. Somehow, the address was still in my head after all this time so I decided to drive by and have a look to see if my imagined visions of my mythical publisher measeured up to reality. The city, the street and the building were all very different than I’d imagined, and I had that weird moment of reconstructing memories to fit reality.

    I decided to get out of my rental car and have a closer look. The La Sorda name was on the building directory. I thought about buzzing and going up to say “hi,” but I had never really met Phil in person and I chickened out. Having read everyone’s mentions here, I wish I had followed through.

    My condolences to Phil’s family and freinds.

  23. Bob Schreck says:

    I was lucky enough to have recently reconnected with Phil after many years. Having known him from my Creation Convention days, our friendship caught like wildfire as soon as I began working with him embarking on our Comico journey together. Very soon after Diana Schutz and I moved to the Norristown area, Phil and I swore to each other that whatever road may lie ahead with the business, that we’d always remain friends. I am so glad that we did. While life took us far from each other geographically, I always held him close in my heart. Getting back together with him this last year let me know that he did the same. I never doubted it, but it was comforting to see that we each kept that promise and put it into action.

    My condolences to all who were lucky enough to have known this incredibly gifted, sweet, and gentle man. Knowing him changed my life. There aren’t many people one can point to in one’s life about which that can be said. The memories are washing over me, so many great times shared…. Including a great afternoon, just mere months ago. How lucky am I?!

    My love to his family and friends. We will miss you, Phil.

  24. Bill Willingham says:

    I’m saddened to hear about Phil LaSorda’s untimely passing. As others above have already mentioned so eloquently, Phil was the heart of Comico back in the day, and the one most personally responsible for bringing me, and the Elementals series, on board with their new publishing company. He was always a gentleman, even in the bad times – and there were a few bad times, as well as the many good ones, because we were all learning the funnybook business back then, even as we were part of redefining it. Phil was one of the principal architects in crafting a company that was in the forefront of the independent comics movement; one which could (and had to) hold its own on the stands against the so-called Big Two.

    I regret not keeping in better touch with Phil in the years following Comico’s demise. My condolences to Dennis and Joey and the rest of Phil’s extended family.

  25. Shelly (Roeberg) Bond says:

    My deepest condolences go out to Dennis, Joey and the rest of the LaSorda
    family. I owe a great deal to Phil as he gave me my very first job in
    comics. While I’m eternally grateful to Diana Schutz, my direct boss at Comico who actually hired me, it was Phil who offered me the position of “Editorial Department” when Diana left the company a few months later. I was somewhat shocked but completely honored to be given the chance to work closely with one man “Art Department” Rick Taylor and keep Comico on the proverbial map as the late 80s comics boom crested. I learned so much in those two years thanks to Phil. Any other business owner would have taken a closer look at my jet black hair, silver lipstick and general post-college/pre-emo gothness and run for cover. But Phil actually decided to give me a chance. And I’ll never forget it — or him. He was a sweet, sincere, and generous guy. And he had great taste in comics. I would have never discovered (and devoured!) Bill Willingham’s Elementals if it wasn’t for getting the opportunity to chase Bill across the country for scripts back in the day. And Phil’s esteemed eye for young talent allowed us to watch the early works of my first-colleagues/later great friends Steven T. Seagle and Mike Allred.
    So thanks to you, Phil, for taking a gamble on some green (as
    in the neo, not eco-inspired) comics enthusiasts. You will never be
    forgotten.

  26. Rick Taylor says:

    Dennis and Sharon,

    Bill and I will be at one or both events in the next few days.

    I can’t tell you how sorry I am for your loss.

    Phil was a great guy and I hold the time at COMICO very close to my heart. You guys were a great ‘family’ to me having moved so far from home. It always meant a lot to me.

  27. In January 1988 Comico was my first staff job in comics. As I was learning the ropes from my editorial mentor, Diana Schutz, and navigating the creaky stairs of the old house that served as Comico’s office, I fondly remember Phil during that time for his buoyant spirit, boundless enthusiasm for comics, and sense of humor. Even when market shifts made the business tough for Comico, Phil kept on smiling!

    When I landed at DC the next year and took ill that fall, Phil paid me a visit shortly after my release from the hospital. I was very thin after surgery, and Phil cracked me up by telling me that I looked like the Joker!

    Many years have passed since our last face-to-face encounter, and that I regret, but Phil LaSorda left a permanent and positive impression upon me. My condolences to the LaSorda family.

  28. Jill Thompson says:

    I am so sorry to hear about this news. I remember meeting Phil back about the same time that Bill Willingham moved The Elementals from Noble Comics to Comico. Phil was so passionate about comics and very encouraging to when he learned that I wanted to make creating comics and drawing my profession. I remember helping Rick Taylor move from Chicago to Norristown and the old house that held the Comico offices. It was so amazing and exciting to walk up those creaky steps to the offices where real comics were created and put together. Phil was always so enthusiastic about the Comico books and I have fond memories of seeing fresh xeroxes of Mage and the Elementals and Jonny Quest… My heartfelt condolences to the LaSorda family.

  29. Rick Taylor says:

    Hey Jill,

    Tomorrow will be a tough day but we were all lucky to know Phil.

    I think often of that winter you helped move out here and get settled.

    Every time I hear ‘Bargain Store’ by Dolly Parton.

    Give me a shout sometime Jill Bill.

    Hugz,

    Rick

  30. Rick Taylor says:

    It’s great to see all the team from the early days of COMICO weigh in and show their appreciation.

    A lot of folks got their start from COMICO’s humble beginnings and it’s nice to see their thanks.

    God speed Phil.

  31. I’d like to echo Rick’s sentiment and say that it brought back a flood of fond memories of the Comico days.

    I only was with the company for several months (while I was working on my undergrad), but it was a wonderful time to be in comics and work with these talented and passionate upstarts: Phil, Bob, Diana, Michael, Shelly, and Rick. Comico was a true pioneer in those days and changed the face of comics with the visionary and bold approach that team brought to the line.

    Phil was a true gentleman… He was one of the good guys. He will be missed.

    My condolences to Dennis, Sharon, and the Lasorda family as well as to Phil’s legion of friends.

  32. Jeff Lang says:

    I just heard about Phil and though I only worked with him for a short time — a thrilling, frustrating, exciting 9 months in the late 80s — I’m stunned by the memories that are swirling around in my head. He was a lovely, kind, decent man and I’m very sad to hear about his passing. My condolenses to his friends and family. I still live near Philadelphia and have reason to pass through Norristown every once in a while. Next time I do, I’ll have to drive past the old office and see what other memories come to light.

    Hi to Di, Bob, Mike and Rick. Good to see you’re all still out there.

    JL

  33. Rick Taylor says:

    I hear you Jeff.

    The last couple of days have been a combination of a time warp back to the 80’s and flood of memories.

    Shelly Bond, Bob Schreck and I went to the viewing the family held last night and I can honestly say I was not prepared for the way I felt.

    Shelly and I took that stroll down memory lane, especially about what it was like those last few months before COMICO folded.

    By then it was Phil, Shelly and me holding the company together with spit and chewing gum.

    The one thing we kept coming back to was how much fun we had and how much laughter the three of us shared. I’ll never have a job where I had that daily level of fun every day.

    After about three years of working with Phil I got to see his true character.

    This was a hard-working guy with real talent who contributed on many levels. He truly appreciated that we were the last geeks standing. It wasn’t about three people watching a dream die. It was three people who loved what they were doing and we still had a little pixie dust left for one last act of magic.

    I have never experienced that level of team work and caring in my life and will most likely never see it again.

    I would certainly hope there was some level of that magic experienced in the lives touched by Phil LaSorda and that they’ve grown to appreciate how special a thing that was.

    I know I have.

    Save a place for me buddy.

  34. Jim Lohr says:

    It’s nice to read so many kind words from so many friends about how Phil touched so many lives – I too will miss him tremendously!

    I met Phil in 1978 at football camp at Kutztown. We became roommates in the fall of 1979 and were good friends for the last thirty (30) years. He was truly one of a kind – a great artist, extremely creative and uniquely fun to be around! Other than his loud snoring…, we had many great times together. We played football, fixed up our dorm room into a swinging bachelor pad, weight trained, power lifted, lived at “the cliffs”, partied at “the cliffs”, partied at the Jersey shore, were each others “best men” at our weddings, not to mention numerous family activities and 100’s of fishing trips!

    I will always remember “Fishy” Phil as a truly fun-loving unique individual, who was a friend to many people, and a BEST FRIEND to me.

    Until we meet up again at the perfect fishin’ hole in paradise… I’ll miss you buddy!

    God Bless – God Speed.
    Jim

  35. SHARON La Sorda says:

    Well, There is so much to say and yet it is so hard….. First, Thank you to the Comico Family who have blog their sentiments and/ who came to visit Norristown. Your being their gave Dennis and his family such support, you will never know the depths of our appreciation. We do know the depths of your Love for Phillip and we will all be the richer for his existence!! I’m not what you call a tech-e, but I find myself checking the blog two, three times a day. I know I do it for the connection to Phillip, know one ever wants to let go and I wanted to write one more time. The last two days especially have been so weird, its almost refreshing to get back to my normal schedule. But I find myself ,as all of us do, I’m sure, Thinking of Phillip! Sam if you read this, I want you to know my mind instantly travels to thoughts of you- words can’t say enough. Know that you are thought of and Loved and we are here for you! To everyone, family, friends who have lost our beloved Phillip, who feels the pain of his lost, who have blogged or not because you couldn’t find the right words, know that you are not alone in your loss and we must gather strength somehow, weather you are looking out onto the sea he loved so much or reading that great new or old comic book for the 100th time, do just that and you will be close to Phillip. This is so hard to end for it is one more door closing. I hope somehow, sometime are lives cross again. For we are all connected for life because Phil brought us together: Love life, take long deep breaths, read lots of Phillips comic books and when you look out on a body of water, think of Phil and what fish might lie underneath the surface. I will also remember all of you!!

    Love, Sharon

  36. SHARON La Sorda says:

    Well, There is so much to say and yet it is so hard….. First, Thank you to the Comico Family who have blog their sentiments and/ who came to visit Norristown. Your being their gave Dennis and his family such support, you will never know the depths of our appreciation. We do know the depths of your Love for Phillip and we will all be the richer for his existence!! I’m not what you call a tech-e, but I find myself checking the blog two, three times a day. I know I do it for the connection to Phillip, know one ever wants to let go and I wanted to write one more time. The last two days especially have been so weird, its almost refreshing to get back to my normal schedule. But I find myself ,as all of us do, I’m sure, Thinking of Phillip! Sam if you read this, I want you to know my mind instantly travels to thoughts of you- words can’t say enough. Know that you are thought of and Loved and we are here for you! To everyone, family, friends who have lost our beloved Phillip, who feels the pain of his lost, who have blogged or not because you couldn’t find the right words, know that you are not alone in your loss and we must gather strength somehow, weather you are looking out onto the sea he loved so much or reading that great new or old comic book for the 100th time, do just that and you will be close to Phillip. This is so hard to end for it is one more door closing. I hope somehow, sometime are lives cross again. For we are all connected for life because Phil brought us together: Love life, take long deep breaths, read lots of Phillips comic books and when you look out on a body of water, think of Phil and what fish might lie underneath the surface. I will also remember all of you!!

    Love, Sharon

  37. Vincent Scott says:

    I found out only today of Phil’s passing, what can be said when a childhood friend is lost the Lasorda family especially Phillip and Joe were two of the first friends I had I am sorry that time seperated us but I will remember days of playing in the backyard, long summers in the creek, poodles, huskies, water rockets, candy from the corner store, the first marvel comic convention, and of course comic books themselves. Our childhood was magical but we have lost the one person who was talented enough to put it on the page for all of us to relive again

    Thinking of you often(Oak Street Lives)

  38. Lonnie Yates says:

    I am sorry that I have just found out that one of my Oak street big brothers has passed. I will never forget being introduced to playing hockey, and golf in the alley at oak street. I just want the Lasorda family to realize how much there family meant to us. They transcended across racial boundaries without even thinking about it, and also allowed every family of color on Oak street to get a different perspective of race during a time of racial uncertainty. I don’t even think they knew they helped our perceptions as we’ve moved along in our lives. As I sit here enrolling my kids into catholic school today thinking of the times we spent working at the church with (Mr. Votto), and having fun having verbal challenges about wolverine being stronger than spiderman. From our family to yours, he will be missed but never forgotten.

    We hope that these words of reflection put a smile on the faces of those who we consider family.

  39. Mike S. Michael says:

    This was the scariest thing. I just discovered Phil’s passing by a wierd accident of fate. I was Phil’s first college roommate at what was then Kutztown State College. I just received a request for money from them in the mail and it started me thinking about those days. So I Googled his name along with Comico, the last thing I really knew about him. This is such sad news. Phil was an energetic, positive, and generally happy person in those days. He helped — actually pushed — me into weight lifting properly. He was big into power-lifting then. He tended to move in more popular circles, but always found a way of including me. He took me to see his brother perform magic. I still have a great photo of him dressed as Rocky and me as a very skinny Superman from Halloween in our first year (1978). He was very much into comic art at that time and produced a couple of drafts for the pleasure of our dormitory wing. One was the beginning of a comic based on our motley group that even included me as the nerdy hero. He also drew for me a composition with several of his ideas for comics he wanted to eventually produce. It included what is possibly one of the earliest depictions of AZ which, judging from the above postings, became a well-known product of his. I’m glad that I still have these drawings to remember him by.

    I was able to catch up with Phil only once after graduation, sometime in the early 80’s, and I remember him mentioning his start-up company, Comico. I remember seeing a couple of their titles on stands after I moved to Baltimore later that decade. I was so glad that he was able to make his love his career. I regret that I never looked him up again to touch base. The coincidence of looking him up online only to find this tragic news is staggering. Phil was a force of personality, a genuinely good person, and I will always consider him a friend. I didn’t catch the cause of death, but he clearly left us all too soon. My sincere condolences to his wife and family.

    Rest in Peace,

    Mike S. Michael

  40. Arthur Douglass says:

    Phil will be missed. I remember playing football with Phil at Kutztown. He was always pleasant and had a good sense of humor. Phil persuaded me to do more squats while weight lifting in Keystone hall. Please accept my sincere condolences to his family.

    Art Douglass

  41. Damn! I knew I was out of “the loop”, but just today found out there’ll be no more “Kaluta!” and big smile from a face that I never thought to never see again. Well, I’m floored. Thanks to Renee Witterstaetter posting a fine photo of Phil, Dave Stevens and Doug Wildey on her Facebook page, and Keith Wilson hyperlinking Heidi’s page here, I’m able to send a belated, but none-the-less heartfelt *Salute* to Phil, knowing he’s alive in my memories, sharing that realm with all of us.

    Michael

  42. Hello webmaster. I think you could also make more of it through a bigger exposure about “RIP Phil Lasorda”. Perhaps you can have some candy distributors.

  43. Samantha Schmoll says:

    A bit of news..Phil is not alone – his father, Jim LaSorda, passed away last Friday. So Phil is now with both his parents……but still missed every day.

  44. Vincent Scott says:

    My heart goes out Dennis, Terry, and Joe their wives and children, Mr. Lasorda was a good man how many men would ride a train with four adolescent boys from Phila to NY for a comic book show. I can never forget how open and friendly both he and Mrs. Lasorda where to me and my family they will be greatly missed

    I apologize for missing the chance to pay my last respect’s

Trackbacks

  1. [...] RIP Phil Lasorda We’ve received word that former Comico publisher, Phil Lasorda, passed away yesterday. In addition to running the company which published such titles as MAGE and THE ELEMENTALS, Lasorda was a creator himself, with the book AZ. (tags: comics obituary) [...]

  2. [...] [Top Story] Heidi MacDonald reports — and Diana Schutz confirms in comments — the death last week of Phil La Sorda, one of the founders of pioneering Direct-Market publisher Comico. No other details are available. A memorial service will be held tomorrow at 10AM in Norristown, Pennsylvania. Details here. [...]

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