Eddie Van Halen, the co-founder of an iconic rock band and one of the most respected guitar player who ever lived, died this week after a battle with throat cancer.
He was 65 years old.
The legendary musician’s son, Wolf, confirmed the tragic news on Tuesday afternoon.
“I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning,” he wrote on Twitter.
“He was the best father I could ask for. Every moment I’ve shared with him on and off stage was a gift.”
“My heart is broken and I don’t think I’ll ever recover from this loss,” Wolf added. “I love you so much, Pop.”
Actress Valerie Bertinelli, who was married to the Van Halen from 1981 to 2007, retweeted her son’s announcement and included along with it a series of broken heart emojis.
According to TMZ insiders, the musician passed away at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica Tuesday.
His wife, Janie, was by his side, along with Wolf, and Alex, Eddie’s brother and drummer.
Over the past 72 hours, the superstar’s health took a massive turn for the worse, as doctors discovered his throat cancer had moved to his brain, as well as other organs.
Van Halen was diagnosed with tongue cancer over a decade ago — having had part of this body part removeed at one point — and had been in and out of the hospital for the past year or so.
He’s on record as having said he believed he got the illness from a metal guitar pick he used to often hold in his mouth… more than 20 years ago.
It’s worth noting that he was also a well-known and frequent smoker.
The Netherlands native founded Van Halen in 1972 — and the group almost immediately became a staple of the Los Angeles music scene.
Thanks to songs such as “Jump,” “Runnin’ With the Devil” and “You Really Got Me,” the group would go on to win numerous awards.
Eddie also played guitar on Michael Jackson’s 1983 smash hit, “Beat It.’
Most notably, the band took home a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance for its 1992 album “For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge.”
The band — which released 12 studio albums — broke up and reunited several times, with Wolf even replacing Michael Anthony on bass starting with their second reunion in 2006.
In January of 2007, Eddie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Last month, Van Halen did an interview amid his throat cancer battle with The Hard Times about his close relationship with 29-year old son.
“Ya know, there were some signs early on,” he said about his son becoming a bassist.
“When he was about 9 months old I put a little guitar in front of him. Instead of using his thumb like a pick, he used his index and middle fingers to strum the strings one at a time.
“I almost cried seeing my boy touch his first guitar. He looked so lame.”
We send our condolences to the musician’s friends, family members and loved ones.
We’ve lost a legend here, folks.
May Eddie Van Halen rest in peace.