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John McLusky (1923-2006)

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James Bond, from the Daily Express

Hector John D. McLusky was born in Dennistoun, Glasgow, on 20 January 1923, and was an artist for Bomber Command during the Second World War. After the war he worked as a freelance illustrator for DC Thomson and others. He married Sheila Graham in 1953 and had two sons, Graham (1955) and Sean (1959). By this stage he was living in London, and later moved to Datchworth, Hertfordshire.

From 1958 to 1966 he drew the James Bond comic strip for the Daily Express, adapting 13 of Ian Fleming's novels and short stories, scripted by Anthony Hern, Henry Gammidge and Peter O'Donnell. During a break on the strip in 1963 due to a legal dispute between the Express and Ian Fleming, McLusky drew "The Beast of Loch Craggon" for the Eagle, and after leaving the James Bond strip, worked on "Secret Agent 13" and "The Voice of Glyndarron" for June, and various strips for TV Comic, including "Orlando", "Laurel and Hardy", "Bugs Bunny" and "The Pink Panther". He also provided illustrations for Look and Learn. In 1981-83 he returned to the James Bond strip, illustrating four original stories by Jim Lawrence.

Throughout his career he maintained other work, including as a substitute teacher and a puppeteer on Bournemouth pier, to counteract the isolation of professional illustration. He and his wife ran a theatre company, The Elizabethans, providing period entertainment. He died in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, on 5 September 2006.

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