Who Is Stan Lee's Wife? New Details About Joan B. Lee, Who Died In 2017

Photo: IMDB
Who Is Stan Lee's Wife? New Details About Joan B. Lee, Who Died In 2017

Beloved Marvel Comics creator Stan Lee has passed away at the age of 95. Lee brought the world Spiderman, The Fantastic Four, Iron Man, The Hulk, Black Panther, and more. He revitalized the world of comics and superheroes. In his personal life, he was married to Joan Boocock Lee for 69 years. The couple met in the 1940s in New York City and became one of the entertainment industry's most enduring couples. Who is Stan Lee's wife? New details about Joan B. Lee, who died in 2017.


1. Their meeting

Stan Lee was supposed to take a woman named Betty on a date in New York City in 1947. Lee recounted the day for the Hollywood Reporter's piece on his 75 years in comics. Lee said: "When I was young, there was one girl I drew; one body and face and hair. It was my idea of what a girl should be. The perfect woman. And when I got out of the Army, somebody, a cousin of mine, knew a model, a hat model at a place called Laden Hats. He said, 'Stan, there's this really pretty girl named Betty. I think you'd like her. She might like you. Why don't you go over and ask her to lunch.' Blah, blah, blah. So I went up to this place. Betty didn't answer the door. But Joan answered, and she was the head model. I took one look at her — and she was the girl I had been drawing all my life. And then I heard the English accent. And I'm a nut for English accents! She said, 'May I help you?' And I took a look at her, and I think I said something crazy like, 'I love you.' I don't remember exactly. But anyway, I took her to lunch. I never met Betty, the other girl. I think I proposed to [Joan] at lunch."


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2. There was just one problem...

Joan was married! After her childhood sweetheart married another woman, Joan had married an American soldier she had only known for 24 hours in 1943 during World War II and moved to New York. She was very unhappy in her marriage. Back in those days, the best way to get a quickie divorce was to move to Nevada for six weeks to establish residency. Joan left for Reno. Not long after, Stan got a letter addressed to "Jack." This worried him, so he got on a plane in New York and flew to Nevada to see what was going on. When he arrived, she was waiting for him. She also had three big cowboy looking guys with her. Lee didn't think he stood a chance. He was wrong. 

3. Their wedding

An hour after a judge granted Joan her divorce on December 5 ,1947, she and Lee married in the room next door. The same judge that presided over her divorce performed her wedding ceremony. Together, Joan and Stan had two daughters, Joan Celia "JC" was born in 1950. Jan Lee was born in 1953, but died when she was three days old. The couple bought a three-bedroom home on Woodmere, Long Island in New York, where they lived until 1952. 


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4. She was his inspiration

After Lee and Joan married, they returned to New York City, where he worked for Timely Comics, a precursor to DC and Marvel. Lee has credited his wife with inspiring him to create characters that are relatable heroes, rather than perfect ones with loads of money and charisma. Lee was ready to quit the business in his late 30s. When he told his wife, she said: "Why not write it the way you want it? If it doesn't work, the worst that's going to happen is they'll fire you. And you want to quit anyway." The result of that conversation was The Fantastic Four, the first big hit of Lee's career.

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5. She was a novelist and voice over artist

The Lees moved to Los Angeles in 1981 so that Stan could oversee Marvel film and television projects. In 1987, Joan wrote a novel called The Pleasure Palace, about a man building the most luxurious ocean liner in the world while romancing several women at the same time. She also did voice over work in two 1990s animated Marvel shows. She was Miss Forbes in Fantastic Four and Madame Webb in Spider-Man. She also had a cameo in X-Men: Apocalypse as well as various other appearances in her husband's projects.

6. Her death

Joan Lee passed away on July 6, 2017 due to the complications of a stroke she had suffered earlier in the week. She was 95 years old. She and Stan Lee were married for 69 years and completely devoted to one another. 

Amy Lamare is a Los Angeles based freelance writer covering entertainment, pop culture, beauty, fashion, fitness, technology, and the intersection of technology, business, and philanthropy. She is deeply devoted to her chocolate Labrador and an avid long distance runner. You can find her on Instagram and Facebook.