herald

Sunday 23 September 2018

'Lou died while doing tai chi' – widow

ROCK legend Lou Reed died practising his beloved tai chi while looking at the trees in his garden, his widow Laurie Anderson has revealed.

The 71-year-old musician, a tai chi master, died from complications related to liver disease at his home in Amagansett, New York.

His wife said: "Last week, I promised Lou to get him out of the hospital and come home to Springs. And we made it! He spent his last days here being happy and dazzled by the beauty and power and softness of nature.

"He died on Sunday morning looking at the trees and doing the famous 21 form of tai chi with just his musician hands moving through the air."

She said her husband was "a prince and a fighter and I know his songs of the pain and beauty in the world will fill many people with the incredible joy he felt for life".

Anderson, who is also a musician and performance artist, added: "We did all we could," saying her husband's death was "peaceful".

The former lead singer of the Velvet Underground had been struggling with liver disease for the past year. Reed's excessive drug use led to him needing a liver transplant.

In April, he was scheduled to perform at the Coachella Music and Arts Festival in California, but had to cancel due to illness.

SURGERY

It later emerged he had undergone his transplant that month at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio but the surgery was kept quiet until he recovered.

The following month, Anderson gave an interview to the London Times about Reed's battles with the disease and his progress.

"I don't think he'll ever totally recover from this, but he'll certainly be back to doing things in a few months,' she said at the time.

In June, Reed released a statement to fans reassuring them of his recovery.

The singer recently returned to the Cleveland Clinic for further treatment when his condition deteriorated, but when it was confirmed that the disease had progressed to the final stages, he decided not to have any further treatment and to go home.

hnews@herald.ie

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