ICv2 columnist, GAMA officer, and longtime game and comic retailer Marcus King passed away Tuesday, March 22, following heart surgery, according to numerous Facebook posts by friends.  King’s own final Facebook post, on Sunday afternoon, shared a selfie from his hospital bed and revealed he was going to have heart bypass surgery on Monday.  He’d had a heart attack, and was also suffering from Covid and pneumonia.

"This will be my last update with my old heart in bad shape,” he wrote. “In the morning, I am having either a triple or quadruple bypass, they’re just not sure. I will probably post again in three or four days, hopefully. Thanks for being my friend.”

King was a columnist for ICv2 from 2010 to 2017, sharing the lessons he’d learned in his 30+ years as a retailer. "Marcus was an original thinker, and he contributed many great columns to ICv2, sharing lessons he’d learned in decades in the business, and reflections on his life as a retailer," ICv2 CEO Milton Griepp said of King. "He had a warm heart, a sense of humor, and a generous spirit. He will be missed."

King began his retailing career in 1986, when he opened his first store in Anchorage, Alaska.  He opened Titan Games in Battle Creek, Michigan, in 1994, and a second store in Kalamazoo in 2009 (see "View from the Game Store – Defining Success"). Although he he was best known as a retailer of tabletop games, he also handled (and wrote about) comics, collectible video games, and other products of interest to his customers.

In 2011, King sold his Michigan stores and moved to Kentucky, where he continued to retail, including a stint managing a retail store for online retailer Troll and Toad, and most recently at Main Street Games & Comics in London, Kentucky.

King was also active in GAMA for many years, including as board member and Vice President beginning in 2005, as a board member in the Retailer Division, and as a speaker at GAMA events.

King was passionate about retailing, constantly experimenting and sharing what he learned with fellow retailers in his column, posts on other sites, and on social media.  He was one of an early generation of game and comic retailers who pushed the business forward and unselfishly helped to grow the pie for everyone. His columns hold up: here’s a list.

Before he passed away, King had set up a Facebook fundraiser to help with expenses, money that will doubtless be needed by his family. Our condolences to his family and friends.