Contributed by Ronald Byrd
Melissa Maro is a political science major at Reardon College in the Bronx and a classmate of Danny Ketch, host body for the Spirit of Vengeance called the Ghost Rider. Melissa befriends Danny but rebuffs his initial flirtation, saying that she doesn’t “like boys.” Melissa has also organized an urban action group in her neighborhood to promote action against drug dealers and corrupt police officers, which makes her a target of the supernatural crime boss Snowblind. One of Snowblind’s underlings hires some thugs to kill Melissa, and they shoot down Melissa and Danny when the pair are riding back to the Bronx on Danny’s motorcycle. The Ghost Rider emerges and rushes Melissa to the hospital, then takes vengeance upon her attackers. However, Melissa’s wounds render her comatose. She was not mentioned again until her reappearance from limbo in Venom: Sign of the Boss #1. Maro, Danny Ketch, and Eddie Brock were taken hostage during an attack on dictator Franco Santera (which he had pre-arranged to gain political sympathy) while he was giving a speech in the United States. Supervillain Teraknid appears on the scene with a grudge against the dictator and plans to kill him and his wife, only to be stopped by Venom.
Melissa was introduced early in Ivan Velez, Jr.’s stint as Ghost Rider writer, but if he had any long-term plans for her, he abandoned them, and the character appears abandoned again. Oddly enough, Darkhold, another horror book of the nineties, also had a lesbian character who was rendered comatose and never heard from again. See the entry for Victoria Montesi.
Maro appeared in Ghost Rider #71 & #72 (volume 3).
Created by Ivsan Velez Jr and Salvador Larocca. Art by Larocca, Sergio Melia, and Ashley Posella.
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