Tragically Hip frontman Gord Downie has died, the band said on its website today.
“Last night Gord quietly passed away with his beloved children and family close by,” said the statement posted on thehip.com. He was 53.
Downie was born in a suburb of Kingston, on Feb. 6, 1964 and attended the Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute, where he and four friends formed the legendary Canadian band the Tragically Hip in 1983. Below, Molson Park , Barrie, Ontario, The Hip playing in 1992:
In May 2016, the band told fans that Downie had been diagnosed with brain cancer, and announced what was assumed to be a farewell concert tour that coincided with the release for the Hip’s 14th studio album, Man Machine Poem.
The 10-city, 15-show blitz across the country started in Victoria and ended in the Hip’s hometown of Kingston.
The final show, on Aug. 20, 2016, was held at Kingston’s K-Rock Centre on 1 Tragically Hip Way and counted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau among the attendees. Below, the official statement as issued on thehip.com:
October 18, 2017
Last night Gord quietly passed away with his beloved children and family close by.
Gord knew this day was coming – his response was to spend this precious time as he always had – making music, making memories and expressing deep gratitude to his family and friends for a life well lived, often sealing it with a kiss… on the lips.
Gord said he had lived many lives. As a musician, he lived “the life” for over 30 years, lucky to do most of it with his high school buddies. At home, he worked just as tirelessly at being a good father, son, brother, husband and friend. No one worked harder on every part of their life than Gord. No one.
We would like to thank all the kind folks at KGH and Sunnybrook, Gord’s bandmates, management team, friends and fans. Thank you for all the help and support over the past two years.
Thank you everyone for all the respect, admiration and love you have given Gord throughout the years – those tender offerings touched his heart and he takes them with him now as he walks among the stars.
Love you forever Gord.
The Downie Family
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