PROVIDENCE, R.I. — The Hasbro executive credited as the father of G.I. Joe for developing the world’s first action figure has died. Donald Levine (leh-VEEN‘) was 86.
His wife, Nan Levine, says he died of cancer early Thursday at Home & Hospice Care of Rhode Island. She says they were just about to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary.
Don Levine served in the Army in Korea and has said he got the idea for the moveable figure as a way to honor veterans.
G.I. Joe was elected into Toy Hall of Fame in 2004, six years after Barbie was enshrined.
Over the decades, G.I. Joe has spawned comic books, cartoons, two movies starring Channing Tatum, and a G.I. Joe Collector’s Club and its annual convention — GIJoeCon — held in Dallas in April.