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Police confirm that ThunderCats writer Stephen Perry was murdered

Stephen Perry

Stephen Perry

Police in Zephyrhills, Florida, have confirmed that ThunderCats writer Stephen Perry, who has been missing for more than two weeks, is the victim of an apparent homicide.

His van was discovered on May 16 at a Tampa motel, reportedly near a severed arm. More remains were found in a dumpster at a gas station two miles from his ransacked home. Perry’s roommates, James Davis, 45, and Roxanne Davis, 49, were missing as well. However, police later arrested the couple on unrelated charges. They’re now considered “persons of interest” in the case.

Perry, 56, suffered from bladder cancer and had been jobless, without health care and, for a time, forced to live in his van with his 5-year-old son Leo. Over the past eight months he received assistance from the Hero Initiative, which helped him to line up work and pay rent, utilities and medical bills.

The Tampa Tribune reports that Krystal Carroll, his 26-year-old ex-girlfriend and the mother of Leo, was told on May 19 that Perry was dead. The two had a tumultuous relationship, with Carroll seeking emergency custody of their son and Perry getting a domestic violence injunction against her, all in late April.

Earlier this week the newspaper spoke with Perry’s longtime friend, artist Steve Bissette, who had been instrumental in bringing the writer’s plight to the attention of the comics industry. Since Perry was reported missing, Bissette has devoted his blog to remembering his friend’s life and career and tracking news reports of his disappearance.

Perry was best known for his work on the mid-1980s animated series ThunderCats and SilverHawks, both developed by Rankin/Bass. However, he also wrote comics like Timespirits and Psi-Force for Marvel and Wally Wood’s THUNDER Agents for Deluxe. Nat Gertler revealed that, to help the writer, he recently purchased the rights to Salimba, the jungle-heroine comic that Perry created in the 1980s with Paul Chadwick.

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Comments

28 Comments

It’s just so sureal. Like, this is the sort of thing you see on CSI; in fiction. My thoughts are with his family.

Absolutely tragic.

Especially since it seemed like his life had finally gotten back on track.

Now waiting for the Law & Order episode based on this sad event.

Crap… :(

Sad end to a legend who was suffering from the cancer, employment, mother of his son. I hope he found some peace now after everything he went through in recent years.

This is horrible and so, so sad.

Thundercats, SilverHawks, this guy WAS my childhood. His imagination shaped mine.

When we become adults we cast aside our childhood heroes never realizing their true value until they are irretrievably gone.

Well it has to be an SVU or CI episode of L&O. And this just sucks. And Nik I am in the same boat. I also grew up watching these shows.

NO! I loved Thundercats as a kid and this news is incredibly upsetting. ;_;

sad to hear that Steven final fate was this. sympathy to his friends and family over their lost. just when it looked like Steve finaly got a silver lining one more card of crap got delt him its not right and sad

Damnit.

Just…damnit.

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I’ve been following Mr. Perry’s story since I heard about it from Steve Bissette. While this news isn’t surprising, it is very disappointing.

The comic community can take something away from this. Understand that some aging or disabled creators seriously need our help. Please donate to the HERO Initiative. I’m not a schill for this organization, but… I’m trying to find any spark of good in this story, and the brightest spot comes from what they did.

That’s about all I have to say. Thanks, Mr. Perry.

This is so sad. To this day, Thundercats is still my favourite cartoon and a huge inspiration to me. This man had talent beyond belief to envision a fantasy world such as it. What a brutal way for a man to go. RIP, Stephen.

This is horrific, not just his murder but the fact he had to suffer with cancer with no help, he had to live in his van with his 5 year old child. Where is the humanity? I’m so grateful to live in a welfare state, for all its flaws it keeps the majority from destitution and keeps children provided for at a basic level. Its called human dignity and I never begrudge my tax money funding it.

Timespirits = amazing. Thx for the great comics, Steve.

Timespirits was one of the most unique comics of the 80′s. Thundercats and Silverhawks remain pop culture icons for a generation.

Steve gave us so much through his work. He didn’t deserve to go out like this, nobody should…

May he forever rest in peace after so troubled an existence.

THis is really sad news. My prayers are with the family. He was the true embodiment of the Thundercat creed, truth, honor, loyality

I hope that when they finally make the Thundercats movie, he is properly remembered.

My thoughts are with his family and friends. So sad to hear this.

It’s a jarring contrast — the difference between the worlds he wrote about and the life he lived. Third Earth, Thundera, Limbo — these were places where good always triumphed and justice, truth, honor, and loyalty carried the day.

I’ve mentioned this in other threads, but I’m trying to help put together a list of his credits. Here are Thundercats episodes that list him as writer:

The Doomgaze
Safari Joe
Queen of 8 Legs
Feliner (2-parter)
Tight Squeeze
Trapped

There are also 4 episodes which are missing their title cards on the DVD release, The Unholy Alliance, Dimension Doom, The Thunder-Cutter, and The Evil Harp of Charr-Nin; Unholy Alliance is almost certainly Leonard Starr, but if anybody could help me find the writer credits for the other 3, it would save me the trouble of going through my VHS collection. (Don’t know if it’s appropriate to ask if anybody knows where I can find pre-DVD rips of the shows, but I stress that I’m not looking for illegal downloads; I already own legal copies of all the episodes, I just need to find the writer credits on those 3 episodes.)

I should have Silverhawks credits soon.

Goodbye, Mr. Perry. I didn’t know you, but your work was important to me. I’ll always remember you.

Rufus Firefly13

May 28, 2010 at 8:49 am

This is horrible and sad. I live in St.Pete, across the bay from Tampa, and I can’t believe this happened in my backyard. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.

I hope they catch who did this so they can get what they deserve,

Now it’s going to be sad when I watch my ThunderCats DVD’s. :(

This is extremely unfair, a horrible way for him to go. I was really hoping he was going to pull through it all :(
Can someone on here create a facebook group/page as a tribute to him? I would do it myself, but I don’t know how

wow – just saw him at heroes con

Just dont understand people sometimes

I’m honestly not surprised by this turn of events. When they found the severed arm near Perry’s abandoned van, it would be only reasonable to assume that it was Perry’s. I just find it interesting that accused drug dealers would kill a poor man so violently when they’ve nothing to gain from the act. However, when said poor man of 56 years years dies both mysteriously and violently in the middle of child custody case with the 26 year old mother of his child, it stands to reason that we’re still going to be waiting for the other shoe to drop on this matter.

Mr. Perry’s situation however does highlight that those of us in the creative fields have to be a bit more actively involved in planning out out futures.

Doesn’t it seem kinda suspicious that Stephen is now dead, and cartoon network are now announcing they are going to be doing a thundercats anime? His family better be getting the rights and getting any money he would have made.

@Joe: The story broke weeks ago. It takes considerably longer than a few weeks to put together a production team and studio for a TV show. The timing is a coincidence.

As for rights and money, unfortunately, Perry didn’t own any portion of the Thundercats property, and indeed didn’t even receive royalties. (Or even perks like free toys — Steve Bissette has recounted lending him money to buy them for his kids.) The only way he would have made any money off the new Thundercats series would be if he had actually written episodes for it — rather an unlikely prospect even if he were still alive.

It’s a shame, though, along with everything else, that he didn’t live to see the show make a return.

… Downright depressing. There’s something wrong with the world these days.

R.I.P. Stephen Perry

He was a legend..his work will always be remembered .

Rest in peace

Is this is what “HOLLYWOOD STAR WHACKER” is all about?

Some say Quiad might be crazy, but few call him stupid.

This mysterious homicide took place around the time Networks where plugging the re-release of “Thundercats” Avatar was in theaters at the time also. Sounds like a “Motive” and “Intent” to me.

Just back search Google.

A blind man can see “Time Spirits 6 September 1985″ is strikingly similar to Avatar, of which BTW, Mr. Perry was a contributor also.

Was Perry about to make a claim against the studio’s? Was he getting ready to pull a Sophia Stewart?

Self proclaimed “HMFIC” James Cameron was already under pressure from Stewart who claimed that Cameron, hurd, Fox and WB embezzled her protected works and the work of others in order to make Terminator and The Matrix. Harlan Ellison’s claims are self evident.

It is a pure fact that Ellison was Paid “hush” money back in the 80′s to conceal this fact. Ellison said it himself.
(youtube: Harlan Ellison) Hollywood is so much more corrupt than even “insiders” are willing to admit.

RIP Stephen Perry and all the other unknown creative talent that’s been harmed by serial thieves in Hollywood.

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