August 2, 2022

Bayport, NY

Multi-Eisner Award Nominee Contribute Original Rocketeer Story To IDW’s “Comics For Ukraine: An Anthology Book Against War

Comics For Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds is a benefit anthology featuring an All-Star Lineup of comic book creators, with all proceeds being donated to Ukrainian refugees.

In times of terrible need, comic creators have assembled for a greater good, be it for famine in Africa with Marvel’s 1980s Heroes for Hope comic or the graphic novels made after the events of Sept. 11, 2001. More recently, Love Is Love sought to help the victims of the 2016 Orlando nightclub shooting. Now, with the Russian invasion of Ukraine, more than three dozen creators, among them numerous Eisner winners and veteran comic icons, have come together for a charity book to raise money to aid Ukrainian refugees displaced by the war.

Alex Ross, Bill Sienkiewicz, Walter Simonson, Stan Sakai and Billy Tucci among the writers and artists involved in the fundraising effort created by IDW Publishing’s Senior Editor and Director, Special Projects, Scott Dunbier.

The 128-page full-color graphic novel is available in numerous editions through Zoop, which is accepting new orders for the next 40 hours (ending August 3, 2022). The campaign has so far raised over $160,000.00 with Dunbier presenting a check for $100,000.00 to Operation USA’s ( Richard Walden at this year’s Comic-Con International.

“I had contacted Scott to contribute anything to the project.” Stated Tucci. “I was left speechless when he and Jenny Stevens Bawcum (sister of Rocketeer-creator Dave Stevens) offered the chance of a lifetime and write and draw my favorite character for a cause that will help save lives.”

Tucci’s six-page story, The Rocketeer: Pavlichenko features Cliff Secord encountering legendary Ukrainian sniper, Lyudmila Pavlichenko in the Crimean Mountains. “Lyudmila is not just the most recognized female sniper of World War II but perhaps the greatest sniper in history.” Tucci stated. “It is an honor to remind today’s readers of this true-life Wonder Woman and her gallant heroism in the face of invasion.”

Joining Tucci on The Rocketeer: Pavlichenko is colorist Brian Miller and designer/letterer Mindy Lopkin.

Astro City’s Kurt Busiek suggested a title based on the viral video of an elderly Ukrainian woman offering an invading Russian soldier sunflower seeds to put in his pocket so they grow when they bury him (watch here).

Comics For Ukraine: Sunflower Seeds is available for the next 40 hours at Operation USA has been providing humanitarian relief all over the world since 1979. Donations to Operation USA can be made here.

About Billy Tucci

Inkpot Award recipient Billy Tucci is a cartoonist best known for his modern-day samurai saga Shi. Through his company, Crusade Fine Arts, Shi has been printed in five languages and sold more than 3 million comic books. The graduate of New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology has earned the prestigious Diamond Comics Gem Award and has been nominated for four Eisner Awards. In addition to his own creations, Billy’s DC Comics’ graphic novel, Sgt. Rock: The Lost Battalion, was awarded the Military Writers Society of America Gold Medal for its depiction of the real-life 442nd Regimental Combat Team, which was comprised of Japanese American soldiers. His earnest retelling of the Christmas story in A Child Is Born has quietly turned into an international blockbuster, winning the Christian Small Publisher Book of the Year Award.  Billy’s critically acclaimed Miss Fury: Joy Division saw the return of the Golden Age Iconfor Dynamite Comics. Billy has recently released Shi: Return of the Warrior, Shi: Haikyo, Shi: Omnibus Edition and Zombie-Sama via Kickstarter and Indiegogo uniting backers from over fifty countries and bringing Crusade Comics’ crowdfunding campaign totals to over $1,000,000.00. 

For Additional Information:

Deborah Tucci

Crusade Fine Arts, Ltd.

You can find Billy Tucci on Twitter, Facebook @billytucci and Instagram @billy_tucci