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Ken Krueger, one of the creators of the San Diego Comic-Con, has died from a heart attack, organisers have said.
With founder Sheldon Dorf and a group of friends, Krueger helped to organise the first event - then known as Golden State Comic-Con - in 1970.
Dorf died earlier this month aged 76 from kidney failure.
Comic-Con, which showcases comic books as well as sci-fi and fantasy films and TV shows, attracts 125,000 fans a year as well as artists and movie stars.
Krueger was involved in the comic and science fiction industries as a retailer, publisher and distributor.
He was responsible for releasing the first professional work of comic creators including Dave Stevens, Jim Valentino and Scott Shaw, as well as science-fiction author Greg Bear.
"Back then, as today, we consider ourselves very lucky to have had Ken serve as the first chairperson of our event," said Comic Con's David Glanzer.
"He, along with Shel and others may no longer be with us, but the love they had for comic art lives on.
"It is a great testament to these people that comics creators are recognized throughout the world at various conventions and events that celebrate this unique form of expression."