May 16th, 2010
06:56 PM ET

Metal rocker Ronnie James Dio has died, wife says

Heavy metal rocker Ronnie James Dio died Sunday morning after a battle with stomach cancer, his wife announced.

"Today my heart is broken, Ronnie passed away at 7:45 a.m. 16th May," Wendy Dio said in a message posted on his official website.

Dio, 67, followed Ozzy Osbourne as Black Sabbath's lead vocalist in 1979.

"Many, many friends and family were able to say their private good-byes before he peacefully passed away," she wrote. "Ronnie knew how much he was loved by all."

Born Ronald James Padavona in 1942, Dio's professional music career began as a high school student in the late 1950s.

His 1960s rock group The Electric Elves evolved into Elf by the early 1970s, when the group played heavy blues rock.

Dio's rock became darker with his band Rainbow, which he left in 1979 to join Black Sabbath.

Black Sabbath released three albums with Dio, including "Heaven and Hell" in 1980, "Mob Rules" in 1981 and "Live Evil" in 1982.

Dio left that band in 1982, but he had a brief reunion with the group a decade later. He formed the group Dio in 1982. The group continued to perform until his illness.

His last public appearance was in April at the Revolver Golden Gods  Awards when he accepted a vocalist of the year award his work on last  year's Heaven and Hell album. Dio appeared frail, but he was able to  speak when accepting his award.

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  1. Joe

    On a real world, west of wonder
    somwhere, nowhere all
    There's a rainbow, see it shimmer
    when the summer falls
    From the book, the word is spoken
    whispers from forgotten psalms
    Gather all around the young ones
    they will make us strong!

    It's the Sign of the Southern Cross

    May 16, 2010 at 9:58 pm | Report abuse |
  2. AGuest9

    RIP Ronnie James Dio

    May 16, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Harry

    One of the greatest, RIP Ronny, you rocked the Spectrum in Philly like no other.

    May 16, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Michael Simmons

    Ronnie will be sorely missed....he was a hero to many of us musicians all over the world...we need to have a moment of silence for him, and his family.......

    May 16, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Joseph Kuss

    Glad Bert is patrolling the boards from his mom's basement. Thanks for keeping us safe, captain!

    RJD had an amazing voice and probably was a driving factor getting me into metal. It's unfortunate that I never got to see him live, but countless others did. While I never got to see/meet you, thank you, RJD...judging by the numerous comments here, you influenced and touched more people than you'd ever know.

    Throwing up the devil horns in a salute from one metal-head....

    \m/ \m/

    May 16, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Tom

    Rest in peace Ronnie! Your song "Rainbow in the Dark" is one of my favorites. May your music live on forever!

    May 16, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Bushpig

    For you idiots, Dio wasn't a devil worshiper. It was all an act, sci-fi, shock, etc. You people are a joke if you can't see through the theatrics of his personna.

    May 16, 2010 at 10:00 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bert

    DJD ..

    I've always enjoyed being a hole...

    Corbin ... You're much too ignorant to be posting things you obviously have no clue about ... and when you cuss .. it only makes you look that much more stupid..

    May 16, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Satan

    Oh please, I have over 50 GB of music (a little over 8000 songs) that I own on my computer, of which only about 13 GB is metal. I have a very eclectic taste in music. Unfortunately, I'm not too big into retarded Christian rock or Country, so I doubt you and I would find any common ground there.

    May 16, 2010 at 10:02 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Kevin

    Wherever he is, he chose his own destiny. If some enjoy the dark side like he did that is his choice. It's sad that he chose the wrong side. God gives us a choice on who we want to serve and Ronnie obviously chose the wrong one. We are not ones to judge but sometimes it is obvious. Glam88 and Bert need to settle down. He probably is singing with Bon Scott right now over a nice fire. Still, my condolences go out to Wendy and family. Ironic, he died on a Sunday, isn't it?

    May 16, 2010 at 10:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • timzrage

      "wrong side"? The "devil" horns were stolen from his grandmother, he told me himself. He was raised in a strick Catholic household and what is now thought of as the "devil horns" was really to ward evil spirits AWAY! Kevin, you didn't see upside down crosses on his stage, did you? While Ronnie sang about dark things doesn't the bible itself contain dark images???

      RIP RONNIE JAMES DIO

      May 17, 2010 at 12:06 am | Report abuse |
  11. Bert

    Joseph Kuss ...

    I'm patroling the board from your mom's basement... ha ha.

    May 16, 2010 at 10:03 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Eddie189

    RIP Rock Legend.

    May 16, 2010 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Bernie G.

    RIP, Dio. You gave so many people so much. Your voice and lyrics are timeless.
    -Bernie G.

    May 16, 2010 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  14. rb

    RIP RJD. another rock god passed on

    May 16, 2010 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Bert

    Bushpig ... the idiot..

    Act or not ... he promoted crap that most morons can't tell the difference between..

    May 16, 2010 at 10:04 pm | Report abuse |
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