Last week it was announced that the upcoming Dio tour of Europe was cancelled due to Ronnie being hospitalized. That didn't sound good.
Now the news is a lot worse - Ronnie has cancer. Stomach cancer. The survival rate for stomach cancer is very low, but apparently he caught it early. That may give him a chance to beat it.
It always seemed like he could just keep on going as his voice has held up remarkably well, and his live performances were still really, really good (even into his mid 60's). Hopefully he'll still be around in another 10 years, singing or not.
11/25/09: Just hung up the phone with both Wendy Dio and Ronnie James Dio himself. Obviously the news was just released about Ronnie having stomach cancer. I was aware of this a number of days ago but did not say anything public until Ronnie's camp was ready to release the news. As I have said in the past, Ronnie has always been one of my closest friends and biggest supporters over the many years we have worked together doing various things. We have a friendship far beyond just music and he being a musician and me being a host. So I have been in a knot over this news when I was first told about it around a week ago.
The results of the many tests he has had were made known yesterday, so now he knows exactly what he is dealing with and will soon find out the course of action. The GREAT news is that it did not spread and is in an early stage! I just hung up with him and he sounded great. The usual RJD, totally commited to "killing the dragon", and he will!.
He is not in pain, sounded great, and was ready to do what he has to do and get back on stage and sing like only he can! It was great to have spent about 20 minutes on the phone with him and hear how positive he was and thankful for all the support from his many fans. He's already made a few changes to his diet that he said has helped him feel great and admitted his days of having a few drinks are mostl likely behind him.
I will share what I can when I can, but know Ronnie is ready to fight and win, and anyone who knows the man knows he will succeed! Lets all continue to keep him in our thoughts and prayers going forward for a speedy recovery. Yes Ronnie is a great singer and icon for the music we love, but he is an even better person and I know he will beat this!
"I'd like to take the time to thank everyone for the most wonderful gift I have ever received — your good wishes, your prayers, your support, your tears and laughter, your anger, your rejoicing, and most of all the unwavering love you have bestowed upon me. I guess I've always felt that we were one person and that you've allowed me to be our spokesman, but until this time of my greatest peril, the truth was perhaps slightly hidden. It is hidden no more. Together we shall face the foe and live on to climb higher mountains and explore greater magic. Together we cannot fail.
"Please accept my never-ending love and dedication to you all.
"So it is written, and so it shall be.
"Magic, from Ronnie James Dio."
According to a posting on the BLACK SABBATH fan site Black-Sabbath.com, fans can send get-well cards to Ronnie James Dio through the official fan club address:
Dio Fan Club 12400 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 624 Studio City, CA 91604
Additionally, if you'd like to send an email to Ronnie, you can do so via email@example.com. After a short time, Black-Sabbath.com webmaster Joe Siegler will print them out and pass them over to Ronnie and his wife/manager Wendy Dio.