RIP Gary “Gyre-Viper” Head
The GI Joe fandom is mourning the sudden loss of Gary “Gyre-Viper” Head. Pretty much anyone following GI Joe in the last few years knew Gary by reputation if not as a friend. He was deeply involved in many projects and a constant presence on the GI Joe Discussion page on Facebook.
Gary had an enthusiasm for all aspects of the brand that few could match, and a habit of striking up friendships with creators and fans alike. Through his connections he gained the habit of getting his hands on things other people didn’t even know existed and he delighted in sharing these amazing, often one-of-a-kind treasures. In many ways he was the Indiana Jones of the GI Joe brand. Easily identifiable by his trademark goggles, Gary was also a welcome staple of many GI Joe conventions and gatherings. His giving nature was even quietly apparent at Joecon, where he made a habit of hiding his exclusives all over the hotel for others to find and enjoy.
Justin Bell of General’s Joes had this to say about his good friend’s passing:
…I can’t think of many folks out there more giving, more driven, or more emotionally invested in the well-being of G.I. Joe. He wasn’t a collector…labelling him as such would be a disservice to what he did throughout his time in the online community. Most of what he acquired he ended up giving away or selling, never holding on long to the physical items, feeding instead off the emotional and intangible greatness of the online community as it absorbed everything that was great about G.I. Joe.
His overt and obvious excitement for the toys reached its peak during the Pursuit of Cobra era, but even as the modern toys moved to a place where he wasn’t quite as enthusiastic, he directed his energy towards G.I. Joe history, and through his work and the work of JoeDeClassified as a whole, the entire historical landscape of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero has been irrevocably altered, and in the best way.
Rest in peace Gary.
Picture courtesy of the GI Joe Discussion Group on Facebook.
If you’d like to say a few words about Gary on our forums, our GI Joe discussion thread can be found here.