Our obituary for a fallen hero (spoilers!) | News Coverage from USA

Our obituary for a fallen hero (spoilers!)

Spoiler alert! What follows reveals the ending of “Avengers: Endgame,” so stop reading now if you haven’t seen it. Because, seriously, we’re holding nothing back here. 




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Tony Stark, the genius playboy philanthropist who transitioned from weapons manufacturing to being a leader in clean-energy technology and armored couture, has died at age 52 in battle with the Avengers against an alien army.

His representative Harold “Happy” Hogan confirmed to USA TODAY that Stark used six gems called Infinity Stones to defeat Thanos, the cosmic invader responsible for making half of the world’s population vanish, but the powerful Avenger ultimately succumbed to fatal injuries. 

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The son of Stark Industries founder/inventor Howard Stark and wife Maria, Anthony Edward Stark was a child prodigy who graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology when he was 17 and became the youngest Fortune 500 CEO four years later when both of his parents died in a car accident.

Tony Stark was primarily known as a weapons designer – and seen by critics as a war profiteer – when, in 2008, he was kidnapped in Afghanistan by terrorists who ambushed his military convoy. Stark, ever the stubborn iconoclast, refused to die: He saved himself, building his first armored suit during captivity and fashioning a device to keep damaging shrapnel away from his heart.

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Upon his high-profile return, Stark announced that his company would no longer manufacture weapons and famously acknowledged at a news conference, “I am Iron Man,” confirming Stark as the first of many superheroes to arrive to protect humans on Earth over the next decade. 

With his devilish grin and mercurial manner, Stark was the coolest dude in any room, becoming an instant celebrity splashed across magazine covers. However, the extra adoration put him on the radar of vicious rivals such as hotshot industrialist Justin Hammer, enigmatic Advanced Idea Mechanics founder Aldrich Killian, and the Mandarin, a mysterious terrorist revealed to be forgettable English actor Trevor Slattery. 

Stark was a leading figure in robotics and artificial intelligence. But it was his work with the Avengers, including World War II super soldier Steve Rogers (aka Captain America) and the large green rage monster fittingly nicknamed the Hulk, where he would make the most impact. 

Even as a personal rift grew between him and Rogers, the one person who always stood by Stark’s side, through the ups and downs (and many romantic dalliances in between), was Pepper Potts. An executive assistant who rose to be Stark Industries’ CEO, Potts eventually married Stark and they had a daughter, Morgan.

Stark was a man-child who once thought only about power, money and himself and later became a hero who gave his life to save everyone else. He was also a fan of handing out cheeseburgers to reporters at news conferences and would hook you up with a wet napkin if you had ink on your face. 

Godspeed, Tony Stark, and thank you.


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