Arturo Vega, who designed the Ramones’ iconic logo, died Saturday. He was 65. No cause of death was given. Vega’s death was announced by Legs McNeil, author of Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk, who was a friend.
Vega, who grew up in Chihuahua, Mexico, before moving to the U.S. in the 1970s, created the “Hey Ho Let’s Go” seal that has adorned Ramones merchandise for decades. He served as the band’s artistic director and, in later years, their archivist and historian. He was also an early source of support for the band. Vega befriended the musicians and let Joey and Dee Dee Ramone live in his loft on the Bowery near CBGB prior to the release of their first album.
“One of the best friends anyone could ever hope for,” McNeil wrote on Facebook. “I knew and hung out with Arturo since 1976 – 37 fucking years, if my math is correct – and if it weren’t for Arturo – Joey and I would’ve starved to death in those early years.”
McNeil continued, “Artie was so fucking fun – he made every thing into an adventure. The world just became a much colder and lonelier place – as if it wasn’t getting that way already. Fuck, I miss him so much already.”