On Tuesday, legendary guitarist Eddie Van Halen, 65, passed away after fighting a long battle with throat cancer. He died at St. John’s Hospital in Santa Monica, CA with his wife, Janie Liszewski, by his side. His son, Wolfgang, and Alex – Eddie’s brother and drummer – were also with him as he passed.
Liszewski and Van Halen married in 2009. And now, the widow of Eddie Van Halen has broken her silence following the iconic guitarist’s death. On Wednesday, Liszewski mourned her late husband’s passing in an emotional Instagram post.
“My husband, my love, my Peep,” she wrote. “My heart and soul have been shattered into a million pieces. I never knew it was possible to cry so many tears or feel such incredible sadness. Our journey together has not always been an easy one but in the end and always we have a connection and love that will always be. Saying goodbye is the hardest thing I have ever had to do so instead I say so long, I will see you again soon in a place with no pain or sorrow. Please watch over Kody and I. We love you and miss you so very much. Love, your PooPee.”
Previously, he was married to actress Valerie Bertinelli who also honored him in an Instagram post on Tuesday night. The couple shared a son, Wolfgang Van Halen, who announced the news of his father’s death on Tuesday. The news spread quickly as tributes from fans and friends alike came pouring in all over social media.
Eddie Van Halen’s Long Battle With Cancer
For more than a decade, Eddie has battled cancer. Allegedly, the lead guitarist of Van Halen has been in and out of the hospital over the past year, and recently underwent chemo treatments.
For the past five years, Eddie flew between America and Germany to receive radiation treatment. For years the famous guitarist was a heavy smoker. However, he believed his throat cancer came from a metal guitar pick he often used to hold in his mouth during concerts more than 20 years ago.
Even as he battled cancer, Eddie still attended shows and rehearsed music with his son, Wolfgang. In fact, his son, 29, became Van Halen’s bassist back in 2006 at the young age of 15.
The Iconic Guitarist’s Amazing Career and Musical Legacy
Eddie Van Halen is considered one of the best and most influential guitarists of all time. He first made a name for himself with his solo on Van Halen’s “Eruption.”
In 1972, Eddie formed the classic rock group Van Halen with his brother, Alex, on drums. The band was rounded out with Michael Anthony on bass and David Lee Roth as the lead singer. Eddie contributed heavily to their 1978 self-titled album as the main songwriter, which threw the group into rock superstardom.
They went on to create chart-topping hit after hit as one of the most popular bands in the world throughout the ’80s. Some of their most iconic songs include “Runnin’ with the Devil,” “Unchained,” “Hot for Teacher,” “Panama,” and “Jump.” Later, their success continued despite a lead singer change. David Lee Roth exited the band in 1985, and Sammy Hagar took over lead vocals.
The band had already achieved hard rock superstar status. But, Eddie’s involvement with Michael Jackson’s “Beat It” turned him into a pop culture icon in 1983. The song’s famous guitar riff and solo were Eddie Van Halen’s creation.
Members of Van Halen have changed over the years, but Eddie and his brother Alex were both constants in the band. In 2007, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame immortalized the rock group when it inducted Van Halen. Eddie is well known as one of the greatest guitar players of all time.