Eddie Van Halen, the prolific guitarist and co-founder of legendary rock band Van Halen, has died at the age of 65 after a long battle with throat cancer.
"I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning," wrote his son, Wolfgang Van Halen. "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."
Van Halen's fight against throat cancer was a long and difficult one. In 2015, he told Billboard that he had one-third of his tongue removed after the cancer had spread to his esophagus.
Known for his iconic, raucous solos, Eddie Van Halen is considered one of the greatest guitarists of all time. His pioneering work with his namesake band—along with his brother Alex Van Halen, Mark Stone, and singer David Lee Roth—in the 1970s indelibly influenced the rock music zeitgeist as well as the art of guitar-playing. Van Halen, whose band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame back in 2007, was named by Rolling Stone as the 8th greatest guitarist of all-time.
We at EDM.com express our sincere condolences to the family, fans, friends, and loved ones of Eddie Van Halen.