I never met Stan Lee, but I had an encounter with him 43 years ago, and it left me convinced that Stan Lee was a great human being.
My encounter with Stan Lee occured in the holiday season of 1975.
I wasn't a big fan of Stan Lee. I was an adult working male at the time, and was not interested in his creations. Comic books, back in that time, were loved by little childreng and by immature or mentally deficient adults.
I was familiar with his work because my son read Marvel Comics. I kind of appreciated the Incredible Hulk because I can relate to how much fun it would be to grow giant muscles and slap ne'er-do-wells upside their heads. I didn't like the occult aspects of Dr. Strange, and I was always suspicious of Spider-Man. Why would a Good Guy be dressed up like a spider? Three quarters of the world population feel fear or disgust when they encounter spiders. Why didn't Stan Lee come up with an American Eagle-Man, or a Labrador Retriever-Man? Those are creatures mankind likes!
Anyway, during the holiday season of 1975, my son asked if he could send a Christmas card to Stan Lee, addressed to the offices of Marvel Comics in New York. I gave my boy permission to do so, so my youngster picked out a Christmas Card, and wrote a brief 'thank you' message in the card, thanking Stan Lee for creating all of the time-wasting juvenile cartoon characters that he created.
A couple of days before Christmas, my boy got a card back in the mail from Stan Lee! It was not a Christmas card, it was a 'holiday' card.
Inside the card was a personal message from Stan Lee: " Thanks for the card! Excelsior! Stan."
Sending a greeting card to a kid he didn't know, with a handwritten note in it, told me everything I needed to know about Stan Lee. CLASS ACT!
Rest in peace, Stan Lee. And thanks for making my kid's Christmas extra special 43 years ago.