Kevin Conroy reportedly died yesterday, November 10, 2022, at age 66, according to friend and actor Diane Pershing in a memorial Facebook post. Among other things, Pershing said, “He’s been ill for a while but he really put in a lot of time at the cons, to the joy of all of his fans.” No further details on his passing were offered, though Pershing reiterated how beloved he was. (Additional reporting confirms Conroy had had a “short battle with cancer.”) Kevin Conroy was an icon to voice actor aficionados and Batman fans alike, as he voiced Bruce Wayne on Batman: The Animated Series beginning in 1992 and would continue to voice Batman in various roles for decades ever since, from cartoons to live action. To many, including this writer, Kevin Conroy simply was the voice of Batman.
Conroy had remained active on social media, which makes his sudden death all the more jarring. He had wished fans a happy Halloween recently, “at Wayne Manor,” which naturally received an enthusiastic response. Conroy had spoken several times about the significance of voicing Batman. In more recent times, he spoke about how the experience of voicing Bruce Wayne, a closeted superhero, helped Conroy process his feelings of being a closeted gay man.
Actor Mark Hamill, who frequently voiced the Joker across Conroy’s Batman, provided a statement about his passing: “Kevin was perfection. He was one of my favorite people on the planet, and I loved him like a brother. He truly cared for the people around him – his decency shone through everything he did. Every time I saw him or spoke with him, my spirits were elevated.”
Whatever your memories and experiences are of Kevin Conroy (and they likely involve the voice of Batman), they are probably extremely positive, and it is tragic that he has died. But his legacy is extraordinary, and it speaks for itself.