Kansas City lost a superhero on Friday.
We lost a great friend.
As you probably know by now, our sponsor Jim Cavanaugh died in an altercation with a shoplifter on May 12, 2017. Jim was defending his store, defending his livelihood, defending the comics that he loved and sold for more than 40 years as owner of Clint’s Comics.
Jim’s death has hit all of us hard. We are dealing with all of the emotions that swell up trying to make sense of a violent death. It’s one thing when it happens in the funny books we read. It’s a whole new thing when it happens in the parking lot outside of the store.
In our middle school days, we were loyal Clint’s customers. Each week, it was a mad scramble to see if one of us could convince our parents to run us up to Metcalf South to get the new comics at Clint’s South. Once we hit 16 and got our driver’s licenses, there was nothing to keep us away each week.
In our middle age days, we started a comic book podcast. Early on, Jim reached out to us and asked us to come down and talk to him. He had the longest running comic book store in Kansas City, after all. We eagerly jumped at the opportunity and made plans to visit in January of 2015.
We went down on a Wednesday – of course, we had to go there on New Comic Book Day! After hours, we sat and spoke to Jim for more than two hours. Jim shared his story about getting into comics, working at Clint’s and then taking over Clint’s. He told us about the legends of the industry, guys like Phil Sueling and Al Plastino and his forty-year friendship with artist Howard Chaykin.
When we were finished, we packed up just thrilled to have done an interview with Jim Cavanaugh. We were still just newbies with the podcast. We really didn’t know what we were doing. But Jim wasn’t done yet. He stopped to ask us how we were funding our podcast. We told him the truth – it was coming out of our own pockets, as this was a labor of love project that we were all committed to doing.
Jim floored us when he made the offer to sponsor the podcast. He liked what we were doing, and the fact that we were Clint’s Kids worked in our favor. Turns out Jim is not the grumpy old man that one imagines reading the Yelp reviews. Jim was extremely generous with his money and his comics, making a lot of donations to local charities and hospitals. He didn’t do if for recognition. He did it because it was the right thing to do.
After we got our first check from Jim, Jerry went back into Clint’s the following week. Jim was sitting at the counter behind the register. The first thing he said was, “Why haven’t you cashed the check yet?” Jerry replied back, “We spent a lot of money in your stores over the years. This is the first time you’re paying us. I’m going to make sure we all get a chance to hold that check!” Jim roared with laughter!
Here is our interview with Jim from January of 2015. This is the best tribute we could offer up to Jim, giving him the chance to be heard one more time. We are so thankful for everything that Jim has done for us over the years. He created a safe store that kids could visit. He helped make our dreams for the podcast a reality. We love you, Jim!
The Worst. Comic. Podcast. EVER! is proudly sponsored by Clint’s Comics. Clint’s is located at 3941 Main in Kansas City, Missouri, and is open Monday through Saturday. Whether it is new comics, trade paperbacks, action figures, statues, posters, or T-shirts, owner Jim Cavanaugh and his friendly and knowledgeable staff can help you find whatever it is that you need. You should also know that Clint’s has the most extensive collection of back issues in the metro area. If you need to find a particular book to finish the run of a title, head on down to Clint’s or check out their website at clintscomics.com. Tell them that the Worst. Comic. Podcast. EVER! sent you.