For Bob LeRose, life was colorful. As a colorist for DC
Comics for 20 years, he meticulously chose from his palette to bring hundreds
of characters and scenes to life.
"If a scene was outside, you knew it was outside; if it was scary, you knew
it was scary, because of the colors," said his son, Kenny LeRose, 47, of
Lord's Valley, Pa. "He was very much detailed. Everything had to be right."
LeRose, of Elmont, died Aug. 30 of complications from emphysema. He was 85.
Months after the raid on Pearl Harbor, LeRose was drafted by the Army.
Following his discharge in 1945, LeRose attended Phoenix Art School in New York
City with the help of the GI Bill.
During McCarthyism, a time of intense anti-Communism when some deemed comic
books unfit for society, LeRose worked as a watercolor artist for Johnstone
and Cushing, a company that created comics for advertising. In 1976, he was
recommended to DC Comics by Neal Adams, an artist known for his work on
"Batman" and "X-Men" who had worked with LeRose at Johnstone and Cushing.
There, LeRose worked as a production artist and colorist.
One of his jobs was to monitor Wonder Woman's appearance, he said. "It was
Bob's job to make sure the line [down the center of her cleavage] wasn't too
long and the little boys weren't titillated too much," Adams said.
But LeRose had a soft spot for Superman. His father, Kenny LeRose said, was
proud of his work on the issues in which Superman was killed off and
But LeRose's main job at DC Comics was getting colors right. He made it a
point to read the dialogue before coloring, Kenny LeRose said, because he
didn't want any discrepancies. He would cringe when he read something like,
"Look at the guy in the green shirt," and the artist had colored the shirt red.
After he retired in 1996, LeRose continued to work at DC Comics one day a
week. When he was no longer able to take the subway to work because of
emphysema, the company sent him work via FedEx.
To LeRose, everything was art, said his niece, Joanne Anderson, 55, of
He once did a series of paintings on the stages of an apple's
decomposition. On another occasion, before eating a hot dog he had bought for
lunch, he painted a picture of it. Her uncle even framed the cloths he used to
blot his comic-book work and, she said, had an unbelievable talent for breaking
down color compositions.
"If you had a blouse on, he would say it's 75 percent yellow, 12 percent
orange and 13 percent white," she said.
In addition to his son, Kenny, LeRose is survived by his wife, Veronica,
61, and three children, John LeRose, 55, of Seaford, Roberta McIntyre, 53, of
Sugar Hill, N.H., five grandchildren and a great-granddaughter. His cremated
remains are to be buried in a private ceremony at St. Boniface Cemetery in