1960s pop icon Bobby Vee has died, aged 73
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1960s pop icon Bobby Vee has sadly passed away at the age of 73.
Associated Press reports that Vee, whose hits included ‘Take Good Care of My Baby’ and ‘Devil or Angel’, died today (October 24) of advanced Alzheimer’s disease, according to his son Jeff Velline. Vee was diagnosed with the disease in 2011 and performed his final show that year.
The singer first took to the stage at the age of only 15 in Moorhead, Minnesota, following the tragic 1959 plane crash that killed rock’n’roll stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and JP ‘The Big Bopper’ Richardson.
Vee and his two-week-old band responded to a call for local acts to replace Holly at his scheduled show at the Moorhead National Guard Armory. In a 1999 interview, he described the moment as “the start of a wonderful career” and a milestone in his life.
With his band The Shadows, he went on to record 38 Top 100 hits from 1959 to 1970, hitting the top spot in 1961 with the Carole King and Gerry Goffin song ‘Take Good Care of My Baby’ and reaching No.2 with the follow-up, ‘Run to Him’.
Vee recorded into the 2000s, but began having trouble remembering lyrics during performances, leading to his diagnosis with Alzheimer’s. “It’s not getting any better, I can tell you that,” he said in a 2013 interview. “But I’m doing the best I can.”
He was married to his wife Karen for more than 50 years. She passed away of kidney failure in 2015 at the age of 71. The couple had four children.