With the current success of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy on the big screen this past weekend, we posted a reminder about the plight of Bill Mantlo, the co-creator of Guardians character Rocket Raccoon, and how you can donate to help with his costly medical bills. In 1992, the comics creator was tragically struck by a hit-and-run driver and suffered traumatic brain injury and has been living in a nursing home where he needs constant care.
Now, Marvel provided a private screening of the film to Mantlo, who gave it a “thumbs up” and had a “huge smile” when the credits rolled and he saw his name on the screen as co-creator of Rocket Raccoon, according to his brother and legal guardian Michael Mantlo, who posted the news yesterday to Facebook, along with photos.
The gentlemen that made it possible for Bill to see his creation, ROCKET RACCOON, come alive in “Guardians Of The Galaxy”, Marvel Attorney David Althoff (far left) and Marvel VP David Bogart (center). Giving Bill this opportunity was a daunting challenge (with all the legal & security protocols that needed to be breached), but these two FINE MEN made it happen, and Bill had the HAPPIEST DAY OF HIS LIFE! I will NEVER be able to thank them enough for all that they have done for Bill!
Michael Mantlo also posted more about Bill’s experience viewing the film:
*****WHAT AN INCREDIBLE DAY FOR BILL MANTLO*****! Marvel hooked Bill up with a PRIVATE VIEWING of “Guardians Of The Galaxy”, and my wife Liz and my beloved cousin Jean assisted Bill throughout, enabling him to sit back, relax and relish in the AWESOMENESS of what is going to be, in my humble opinion, Marvel’s GREATEST AND MOST SUCCESSFUL FILM EVER! Bill thoroughly enjoyed it, giving it his HIGHEST COMPLIMENT (the BIG “THUMB’S UP!”), and when the credits rolled, his face was locked into the HUGEST SMILE I HAVE EVER SEEN HIM WEAR (along with one or two tears of joy)! This was the GREATEST DAY OF THE LAST 22 YEARS for me, our family, and most importantly, BILL MANTLO!
In other happy news, Bill Mantlo also was one of the recipients of the 2014 Bill Finger Award for Excellence in Comic Book Writing. The photo just below of Mantlo was posted with the award announcement.
Bill Mantlo, a man who not only gave the world great stories through his comic book creations, but also worked as a lawyer helping those in need, has suffered greatly since the accident. So, it is indeed wonderful news that he was so pleased with seeing his character brought to life on film and seeing his name on the big screen as its creator, and that it was such a great experience for his family as well. If you’ve seen Guardians of the Galaxy, which was a huge success at the box office this weekend, then you know that the wise-cracking, gun-toting Rocket Raccoon stole the show, so it’s no wonder Mantlo was happy about the film. The article Tragic Tale goes into detail about Mantlo’s life and his post-accident struggles, so I highly recommend reading it, and if you can, donate to help with the costs of his care. (Note, Disney/Marvel has reportedly treated Mantlo fairly with regards to compensation and has “made incredibly generous gestures,” but even with that, the cost of Mantlo’s long-term medical treatment and care remains enormous.)
If you don’t use PayPal, you can send cards, letters, and/or donations to Mantlo at the address below:
Cards, letters or donations to Bill Mantlo can be sent to:
26364 East Pintail Road
Long Neck, DE 19966
Please make out any checks to “Michael Mantlo” “” Bill’s legal guardian.