Eddie died at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica Today w/ His wife Janie, son Wolfgang, and brother and drummer Alex, by his side. Reports say that the last 72 hours Eddie's ongoing health battle went massively downhill -- doctors discovered his throat cancer had moved to his brain as well as other organs. Eddie had been battling cancer for well over a decade.
He'd been in and out of the hospital over the past year and was flying between the US and Germany for 5 years to get radiation treatment. Nevertheless, he continued to attend concerts and rehearse music with his son, Wolfgang, who became Van Halen's bassist in 2006.
Wolfgang, shared the sad news via his social media. He wrote, "I can't believe I'm having to write this, but my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning. "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. I love you so much, Pop."
Van Halen | Rock & Roll Hall of Fame: Inductee Eddie Van Halen forever changed the vocabulary of the electric guitar. With blistering speed, control, and melodic feel, he perfected the art of shredding, unleashing two-handed finger tapping, dramatic whammy-bar moves, and other astonishing never-before-seen techniques. Innovative, like his hero Les Paul, Eddie reimagined the sonic possibilities of the guitar and became an inspiration for an entire generation of musicians who worshiped his sound and style.
His band Van Halen kicked the American hard rock scene into high gear in the late Seventies, became rock heroes on MTV in the Eighties, and gave rise to a steady stream of shredders and trailblazers ever since.