Tuesday 18 September 2018

'We've lost a family member' - Bono on death of tour manager Dennis

The late Dennis Sheehan. Photo from U2's official website

It was a sombre start to the LA leg of U2's tour as their long-time tour manager passed away.

Dennis Sheehan (68) was found unconscious in his room at the Sunset Marquis Hotel on Wednesday morning.

He is believed to have died from a heart attack.

"We've lost a family member, we're still taking it in," front man Bono said.

"He wasn't just a legend in the music business, he was a legend in our band. He is irreplaceable."

Born in Wolverhampton in the UK, Mr Sheehan has been U2's tour manager for the last three decades.

He previously worked with Lulu, Stone the Crows, The Damned, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Soft Cell, Patti Smith, and Lou Reed.

Music promoter Arthur Fogel of Live Nation confirmed the death "with profound sadness".

"U2's longstanding tour manager and dear friend to us all has passed away overnight," he said.

"Our heartfelt sympathy is with his wonderful family."

The late Dennis Sheehan. Photo from U2's official website

The late Dennis Sheehan. Photo from U2's official website

Sheehan began his long career with U2 in 1982. A modest man, he once joked his main qualification for the job was being able to drive.

In 2008, he was awarded the Parnelli Lifetime Achievement Award - which are considered to be the "Oscars of the live event industry".

A fellow tour manager Jake Berry described Dennis at the time as "great, hard-working and loyal friend who always has everyone's best interest at heart".

Berry also recalled a time U2 dressed as members of Led Zeppelin in his honour and said "they'd do anything for him".

U2 had kicked off their five-date stint in Los Angeles just hours before Sheehan's death.

Mr Sheehan's death is the third major bereavement the band have suffered this year.

In February, their long-time spiritual mentor Pastor Jack Heaslip died.

Drummer Larry Mullen's father died before the Innocence + Experience world tour in Vancouver earlier this month.

Speaking at Larry Mullen Senior's funeral, the drummer joked; "Nice one on the timing dad." He added: "I love you, and you know that."

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