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Gus Arriola passes at age 90
Several of you have written in to alert me to the passing of Gus Arriola, creator of Gordo, who died at age 90 in his home in Carmel California. Gus’ feature was launched in 1941 and appeared in over 220 newspapers and ran in The San Francisco Chronicle for 43 years and was one of the first comics to celebrate Mexican culture in the United States.
“My main goal was to maintain a positive awareness of Mexico through all the years, every day, without being political,” he said in 1989. “When I started, words like ‘burrito’ were unknown in the United States.”
The Chronicle has a good write up regarding Gus’ career and history. Of note is that UC Berkeley’s Bancroft Library has acquired the Gordo collection and will have a reception in Gus’ honor next month.