Tragically Hip’s Gord Downie dies of cancer at 53
On Tuesday night (Oct.17) Canada and the whole world lost a music icon. Gord Downie died at 53 due to a glioblastoma, a treatable but non-curable form of brain cancer.
Downie was the lead singer and lyricist for the Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip, and also released six solo albums: ‘Coke Machine Glow’ (2001), ‘Battle of the Nudes’ (2003), ‘The Grand Bounce’ (2010), ‘And the Conquering Sun with The Sadies’ (2014), ‘Secret Path’ (2016), and ‘Introduce Yerself’ (set for release on October 27).
It was his family to announce his death posting the news on the Tragically Hip’s website: “Last night Gord quietly passed away with his beloved children and family close by. Gord knew this day was coming – his response was to spend this precious time as he always had – making music, making memories and expressing deep gratitude to his family and friends for a life well lived, often sealing it with a kiss… on the lips.”
“Gord said he had lived many lives. As a musician, he lived “the life” for over 30 years, lucky to do most of it with his high school buddies. At home, he worked just as tirelessly at being a good father, son, brother, husband and friend. No one worked harder on every part of their life than Gord. No one.”
“We would like to thank all the kind folks at KGH and Sunnybrook, Gord’s bandmates, management team, friends and fans. Thank you for all the help and support over the past two years. Thank you everyone for all the respect, admiration and love you have given Gord throughout the years – those tender offerings touched his heart and he takes them with him now as he walks among the stars.
The Tragically Hip were formed in 1983 by Downie, Rob Baker, Johnny Fay, Davis Manning, and Gord Sinclair. The band had two NO.1’s, “Ahead By A Century” (1996) and “In View” (2006) along with six others that reached the top ten.
Gord suffered a seizure in December 2015 and it was during the ensuing exam that he was found to have a glioblastoma. He and the band did not make the public aware of the diagnosis until May 2016 and, during that summer, the Tragically Hip mounted a farewell tour across Canada. Their final show, on August 20 last year at Rogers K-Rock Centre in hometown Kingston, was broadcast nationwide by the CBC.