Don Rosa

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Keno Don Hugo Rosa, known simply as Don Rosa, (born June 29, 1951) is an American comic book writer and illustrator known for his stories about Scrooge McDuck, Donald Duck and other characters created by Carl Barks for Disney comics, such as The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck.


Early life

Don Rosa's grandfather, Gioachino Rosa, lived in Maniago, a small village at the foot of the Alps in Northern Italy, in the province of Pordenone. He emigrated to Kentucky, United States around 1900, established a successful tile and terrazzo company, then returned to Italy to marry and start a family. In 1915 just after the birth of his son Ugo Rosa, Gioachino returned to Kentucky with his wife, two daughters and two sons. Ugo Rosa grew up and was later married in Kentucky. His wife was born to a German American father and a mother with both Scottish and Irish ancestry.

Don Rosa was born Keno Don Hugo Rosa on June 29, 1951 in Louisville, Kentucky. He was named after both his father and grandfather. Gioachino was called "Keno" for short. Don's father was named Ugo Dante Rosa, but used the name "Hugo Don" Rosa in America.

Don Rosa was exposed to comics at a very young age, as his 11-years-older sister was a comics hoarder, and had thousands of comics for Don to look at and later read. Rosa began drawing comics before being able to write. Until high school his featured characters were a large cast of stick figures featured in comedy-adventures like the Barks comics and old movies Don enjoyed most. He never tried to draw more than stick figures because the drawings, for him, were illustrations to get the story told. Only the story was important to him, not the actual drawings. His favorite comic books growing up were Uncle Scrooge by Western Publishing and Little Lulu comics from Dell Comics (Western Publishing), and his sister's collection of MAD comics and magazines. When he was 12 years old he also discovered and enjoyed the Superman titles by DC Comics of the editor Mort Weisinger period. When he became a serious collector of older comics, he particularly enjoyed the classic E.C. horror and science fiction comics of the 1950s, Will Eisner's The Spirit, Walt Kelly's Pogo, and most comics of the 1940s onward.

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