Roy Gerald Krenkel was born July 11, 1918 in the Bronx, NY. His father was Frederick Krenkel, a second generation German immigrant, who worked as a cutter at a clothing factory. His mother was Louise Kuppenhoffer. She was also a child of German immigrants. At the time of his birth his father was 41 and his mother was 34. He was an only child. They lived at 4692 Park Avenue, Bronx, NY.
In 1938 he studied at the Art Students League with George Bridgman.
He served as a Private in the U.S. Army in the Philippines during WW2. His enlistment papers of January 23, 1942 record him as living in Queens, and having graduated high school, single, without dependents, and employed as an actor.
After the war, Krenkel returned to NYC, where he attended classes with Burne Hogarth at the Cartoonists and Illustrators School, which later became the School of Visual Arts.
In the 1950s he worked in the comic book industry for publishers, such as ACG, Atlas, Eastern, EC, and Harvey.
He also worked for pulp magazines like, Fantastic Science Fiction, Marvel Science Fiction, Space Stories, and Science Fiction Adventures.
In the 1960s he created book covers for Ace paperbacks and he also created illustrations for Analog and Incredible Science Fiction.
He spent his last decades illustrating the works of Robert E. Howard and Edgar Rice Burroughs for a variety of publishers of hardcover, paperbacks, and fanzines.
According to Frank Frazetta,"Roy Krenkel has never ceased to be a constant source of inspiration to me -- a truly conscientious artist who will not tolerate incompetence."
Roy Krenkel died of cancer at age 64 in February 24, 1983.
© David Saunders 2009