Artist and architectural preservationist Robert Miles Parker died April 17. Parker, an artist known for his pen-and-ink renderings of famous buildings in Los Angeles and New York, died of unknown causes after suffering from several health conditions including AIDS, the Los Angeles Times’s Elaine Woo reports. He was 72.

Along with publishing three collections of his works, Parker also founded San Diego's Save Our Heritage Organization, which has kept many historic buildings in the city from the fate of the wrecking ball. His passion for preservation was contagious, Woo writes, and peopled flocked to him. “A flamboyant personality who was more of an instigator than an organizer, Parker provoked others … to drive the campaign,” she writes. Back East, his personality and drawings garnered so much recognition from the press that The New York Times once compared him to celebrity caricaturist Al Hirschfield.

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