Dick Ayers was born at Ossining, N.Y. His parents lived in Bogota, N.J. until the family moved to White Plains, N.Y. circa 1927. He enlisted in the US Army Air Corps September, 1942 and served with the 586th Bomb Squadron, the 394th Bomb Group, and the 98th Bomb Wing through six campaigns (European Theater, Britain, Normandy, Germany) After his discharged October, 1945, he went to art school at the Art Career School, Cartoonists and Illustrators School, NYC from 1946 to 1948.
He started his career in 1947 pencilling for Joe Shuster. Then from 1948 to 1956 lettering, pencilling and inking for Vin Sullivan of Magazine Enterprises on the “Funnyman” series. Ayers went on to pencil and ink Western stories in the late 1940s for Magazine Enterprises’ A-1 Comics and Trail Colt, and for Prize Comics’ Prize Comics Western. With writer Ray Krank, Ayers created the horror-themed Western character Ghost Rider in Tim Holt #11 (1949). (After the trademark to the character lapsed, Marvel Comics debuted its own version of the character in Ghost Rider #1 (Feb. 1967), by writers Roy Thomas and Gary Friedrich and original Ghost Rider artist Ayers.)
From 1951 to 1976, Ayers began a long freelance run at Atlas Comics (Marvel Comics), drawing horror stories in various titles, including Journey into Mystery and Strange Tales. He also drew the brief revival of the Golden Age Human Torch in Young Men #21-24 (June 1953 - Feb. 1954). During the 1950s, Ayers also drew in a freelance capacity for Charlton Comics, including for the satirical series Eh!. Ayers was probably Kirby’s most prolific inker, as the pair produced hundreds of pages of western and monster stories before the Marvel superhero era began. But while he also inked Kirby on numerous other titles in the 1960s, it’s surely his run on early Fantastic Four issues that will loom the largest of their collaborations. From 1976 to 1979 he worked for DC Comics, followed by penciling for Archie Comics from 1979 to 1986 and AC Comics in 1991 to the present day.
At the later part of his life, Dick did commissions (re-created covers and character drawings). His son Richard assisted him in titling, lettering, and coloring. He died on May 5th 2014, days after his 90th birthday.