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Bobby Vee Dies: '60s Pop Singer Had Advanced Alzheimer's

Bobby Vee Dies: '60s Pop Singer Had Advanced Alzheimer's

Bobby Vee, the 1960s pop singer, died Monday of Alzheimer's disease. (Rex Features via AP Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 25 October 2016 06:02 AM

Bobby Vee, born Robert Velline in Fargo, North Dakota, died Monday of advanced Alzheimer’s disease at age 73. Vee was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2011 when he started having trouble remembering the lyrics to his songs and he stopped touring that year.

Fifteen-year-old Vee got his start in 1959 at the Moorehead National Guard Armory in Minnesota when his brand new band was one of the fill-ins after rock stars Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson died in a plane crash. His band was so new he didn’t name it until the show’s emcee asked for the band’s name, The Associated Press reported. Looking down at the shadows on the floor, he answered “The Shadows.”

Vee went on to record 39 Top 100 hits between 1959 and 1970, hitting No. 1 with “Take Good Care of My Baby” and No. 2 with “Run to Him.”

Vee continued to record and tour even after his popularity waned with the British invasion. According to the AP, Bob Dylan briefly played in Vee’s band while growing up in Minnesota.

Family members said Vee’s Alzheimer’s didn’t affect his memory as much as his speech since he found it hard to remember words when talking about something. He tried different methods to alleviate the symptoms, including acupuncture, chiropractic care, and even painting, the AP said.

Vee was married to his wife Karen for more than 50 years until she died of kidney failure in 2015. They had four children, and Vee’s sons performed with him while he toured.

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Bobby Vee, born Robert Velline in Fargo, North Dakota, died Monday of advanced Alzheimer's disease at age 73. Vee was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2011 when he started having trouble remembering the lyrics to his songs and he stopped touring that year.
bobby vee, dies, 1960s, pop, singer
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2016-02-25
Tuesday, 25 October 2016 06:02 AM
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