Ok, I know, I'm terrible at this. I keep giving you deadlines as to when I'm going to finish this story, then I fail to meet them, I guess it's only appropriate that Deadpool comes out today (DEADPOOL COMES OUT TODAY!!!!), and the man that created the Merc With A Mouth is/was notorious for the same thing.
*Not a shot at Rob Liefeld... he's the man... just a fact.
But enough about my ability to disappoint you, let's finish this story!
To set the stage, I've just gotten to Mike's house (the seller) and I'm asking him why after 2+ years he's just now decided to call me back and sell the collection. Further recap, the collection in question belonged to his wife's sister's son. Who tragically passed in the Gulf War back in the early 90's. When I met with Mike & his wife back in 2013, they didn't know if they could part with the collection because it still held a lot of sentimental value to the family, and Mike's wife's sister couldn't bring herself to sell it.
If you want more backstory, just jump back to either of the previous longer posts for all the lovely details.
So here I am, reviewing the collection for the second time, the one that had gotten away, and Mike begins to tell me why they have just now called me back. His wife, Charlotte, actually speaks up and says that sadly, her sister is experiencing signs/stages of dementia. And that she and Mike are going to be solely financially responsible for her going forward.
Since the books had no immense sentimental value to them, they decided it was time to move on from the collection and use the proceeds to help take care of Charlotte's sister and her medical bills. Charlotte told me that she believes it's what her nephew would have wanted, for his books about heroes to take care of his mother and be a financial hero to her late in life. Very poetic. I chose to look at it like an actual real hero, was still taking care of his mom 25 years after he passed by leaving her an amazing collection that he'd put together meticulously for years.
I looked through the collection for a second time as Mike reminded me what $ amount I had offered him in 2013 for the collection. I could see in his eyes that he was just hoping that I would agree to pay the same amount that I had offered back then. Not realizing that the books had probably doubled in value in that short period of time. Maybe not all of them, but most of the big keys had, and there were probably 50 new "keys" that had emerged thanks to new movie and television properties that had debuted since 2013 or been announced since 2013.
As I looked at the books and saw a huge key after a huge key (images to follow), I realized that this was one of those moments where you find out what you're made of. A time where you can grab the $, and move on down the road, chalking it up to looking out for yourself, or "smart business."
But it's hard to give someone a small amount of money for something very valuable, knowing that every penny that these people received was literally going to fund an aging woman's needs. There really wasn't much thought, giving Mike my 2013 $ offer just wasn't going to be an option.
What we did instead was work out a consignment agreement, where these books will pay Mike and Charlotte WAY more $ over the long haul to take care of Charlotte's sister for hopefully years to come.
There are a lot of validating moments in the collectibles business. Finally finding the comic or toy you've searched for for years, or helping someone else do the same thing come to mind as a couple of examples. But the best moment I think I've had doing this, was when I was explaining that we could sell the books for Mike and Charlotte, to Mike and Charlotte, and how much more they would make from the books in time versus the 2013 $ offer that they were expecting, Charlotte began to cry.
She told me how much of a weight this whole thing had been on her, and that it was getting increasingly difficult financially to keep up with what her sister needed. Honestly broke my heart. No one ever plans for dementia, and seeing how badly it was effecting them was terrible.
But by some miracle, these two people that had NO knowledge of comics, who were graciously willing to allow the books to be stored at their house for all these years, who were now tasked with taking care of the collections late owner's mother, were now able to use these same books to provide for her.
I'm sure the family was close to throwing them out many times. But somehow they held onto them, and through that crazy journey, from the hands of an avid and serious HERO collector, to his mother, to his loving aunt, they have now found their way back to the market, and eventually, as the proceeds from their sale; they'll find their way back to helping out a fallen hero's mother as she fights an awful disease.
We've had a lot of great stories pass through our walls, but the cycle on this one will be tough for anything to beat... ever.
And so, with no further adieu, I give you a few highlights (pictures for those of you reading this via email.) of the collection for your viewing pleasure. You can see all of these books in their glory on our site by searching box code MM1 and then codes MM2 - MM7 for the rest of the collection.
I doubt we'll be able to equal this epic anytime soon, so I hope you've enjoyed it.
Until next time, keep collecting!, as you never know who your collection will benefit one day.
Here are a few highlights of what Mike & Charlotte had, to see ALL the best from this collection, search MM1 in our store search bar.
Here's the link for your convenience.