Eddie Van Halen, legendary guitarist, dies at 65

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·Features and Health Editor
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Legendary guitarist Eddie Van Halen has died at the age of 65 after a battle with throat cancer.

The co-founder of Van Halen died at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica Tuesday, according to TMZ, with his wife, Janie, by his side, along with his son, Wolfgang, and Alex, Eddie's brother and drummer.

Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs at the Nikon at Jones Beach Theater on Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015, in Wantagh, N.Y. (Photo by Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
Eddie Van Halen has died at the age of 65. Photo: AP

Van Halen’s son Wolf announced the news online.

“I can’t believe I’m having to write this, but my father has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning,” he posted on Twitter.

“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.”

**FILE PHOTO** Eddie Van Halen Has Passed Away at 65 from Cancer. NEW YORK, NY - OCTOBER 8: Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs on the Diver Down tour at Madison Square Garden on October 8, 1982. Credit: mpi04 / Media Punch Inc. ***NO FRANCE***. /IPX
Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs on the Diver Down tour at Madison Square Garden in 1982. Photo: AP

Eddie was born in the Netherlands and raised in Pasadena, California. He founded Van Halen with his older brother, drummer Alex.

The siblings were then joined by vocalist David Lee Roth and bassist Michael Anthony.

Eddie Van Halen placed eighth in Rolling Stone’s 2015 poll of the 100 greatest guitarists.

CHULA VISTA, CA - SEPTEMBER 30:  Guitarist Eddie Van Halen of Van Halen performs on stage at Sleep Train Amphitheatre on September 30, 2015 in Chula Vista, California.  (Photo by Daniel Knighton/Getty Images)
Hi is survived by his wife and son. Photo: Getty

Throughout his career, Eddie was dogged by personal and health issues that would intermittently interfere with his work in music.

A chronic joint problem, exacerbated by his reckless onstage style, forced him to undergo hip replacement surgery in 1999.

The onset of cancer — likely the result of heavy smoking — led to the surgical removal of part of his tongue in 2000.

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