Remembering Eddie Van Halen
Updated: Nov 17
Eddie Van Halen, the legendary guitarist and co-founder of Van Halen, died on Tuesday, October 6th at age 65 after battling cancer for over a decade.
Rock legend Eddie Van Halen has tragically passed at the age of 65 in St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica on Tuesday, October 6th. Those by his side included his wife, Janie, his son, Wolfgang, his ex-wife Valerie Bertinelli, and Alex, Eddie's brother and Van Halen drummer. TMZ reports that although he has been battling for over a decade, sources close to the rocker admit his physical state declined dramatically in the last 72 hours, as doctors discovered that his lung cancer had spread to his brain and other parts of his body. Just one year ago, we reported that Eddie was flying to Germany for secret throat cancer treatment.
His death was announced via social media from his song Wolfgang. "He was the best father I could ever 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 fully recover from this loss." He added, "I love you so much, Pop." See the full post below.
Not only was Eddie Van Halen a great father, but also a legendary rock artist and guitarist. He first made a name for himself with his stellar guitar solo on the band's song "Eruption." Listen here.
Back in 1972, Eddie started the classic rock band with his brother Alex Van Halen on drums, Michael Anthony on bass, and David Lee Roth as the lead singer. Eddie was not only a guitar player, but also a talented songwriter, as he was the main songwriter on Van Halen's self-titled debut album in 1978 which began their rockstar career.
Hit after hit churned out of the band: "Runnin' with the Devil," "Unchained," "Hot for Teacher," "Panama," and more. Although Roth left in 1985, he was replaced with Sammy Hagar as the band continued success.
Although a rock legend already, Eddie hit full pop culture icon status with his stellar guitar solo in Michael Jackson's "Beat It" (1983).
According to RIAA, Van Halen has sold over 56 Million albums in the US, and 80 Million worldwide. The band had one No. 1 hit - "Jump" - two top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot 100. During the 80's, they had more Billboard Hot 100 hits than any other hard rock or heavy metal band, which was a very popular genre of the time! Eddie was also named the "No. 1 Greatest Guitarist of All Time" by Guitar World Magazine in 2012.
Eddie Van Halen was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2007, and is still considered one of the greatest guitar players and rockstars of all time. Rest In Peace.