Al Jaffee, the award-winning cartoonist of Mad magazine died Monday, his granddaughter, Fani Thomson confirmed. Jaffee retired at the age of 99 and set a Guinness World Record for his 77-year career. Jaffee is famed for his fold-ins on the inside back cover of the magazine, bringing delight to a number of children.

Jaffee’s work had become something of cult fiction, as he was also referenced in The Simpsons. Magazines like Playboy and Sports Illustrated also made spoofs of his fold-out inserts.

Al Jaffee cause of death

Jaffee died in Manhattan from multiple organ failure.

Al Jaffee net worth

According to various online reports, Jafee had a reported net worth between $1 million and $5 million.

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Al Jaffee age

Al Jafee was 102 at the time of his death. He was born on March 13, 1921.

Al Jaffee relationship

Jaffee married Ruth Ahlquist in 1945; they had two children, Richard and Debbie.  They divorced in 1967.

In 1977, Jaffee married Joyce Revenson, a widow. They lived in Manhattan, summered in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and wintered in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Joyce died in January 2020.

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Al Jaffee career

Jaffee began his career in 1942 as a comic-book artist for several publications, including Joker Comics and other comics published by Timely Comics and Atlas Comics. These were the precursors of Marvel Comics.  Jaffee created several humor features for Timely, including “Inferior Man” and “Ziggy Pig and Silly Seal.”

During World War II, he worked as an artist for the military in various capacities. After returning to civilian life in 1946, he started working for Stan Lee again. Jaffee first appeared in Mad in 1955.

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In 1964, Jaffee created the Fold-In as a one-time experience, which later went on to become his longest-running feature in the magazine. The fold-in was a drawing that was folded vertically and inward and revealed a “hidden” picture. Initially, Jaffee thought it was a one-shot satire of the triple fold-outs that were appearing in glossy magazines such as Playboy, National Geographic, and Life. However, Jaffee was asked to do a second installment. Soon enough, the Fold-In became a recurring feature on the inside back cover of the magazine.

In 2008, Jaffee received the Reuben Awards as the Cartoonist of the Year. New Yorker cartoonist Arnold Roth said, “Al Jaffee is one of the great cartoonists of our time.” Describing Jaffee, Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz wrote, “Al can cartoon anything”.

Al Jaffee family

Jaffee’s parents were Mildred and Morris Jaffee. He was the oldest of four sons. His parents were Jewish immigrants from Zarasai, Lithuania. His father had a management job at a department store in Savannah.

He and his brother attended the High School of Music & Art in New York City in the late 1930s.