The legendary lead guitarist for rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd has passed away at the age of 71, a spokesman for the band confirmed as fans and friends took to social media to pay tribute.
Gary Rossington was the last surviving original member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, who started the band in 1964.
Fans have taken to Twitter to pay their respects to the legendary guitarist.
“I was saddened to learn that Gary Rossington, lead guitarist and last founding member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, has passed away at the age of 71,” wrote one fan.
“He was one of the ‘street survivors’ of the 1977 plane crash that killed three members, including lead singer Ronnie Van Zant, three days after the album’s release,” added the fan.
Another fan wrote, “I consider @Skynyrd one of America’s three greatest rock bands of all time and Southern rock-style Led Zeppelin.”
He continued, “Gary Rossington’s influence and talent was a big part of that. His place in music history should not be underestimated. Gary Rossington, RIP.”
Read our Gary Rossington blog for the latest updates…
The consequences of the plane crash
The traumatic incident led to a 10-year hiatus for the band as surviving members grappled with the deaths of their beloved friends.
“One day we had everything, the next day there was nothing. We were on top of the world and got thrown off,” Rossington told People in 1980.
The grieving guitarist recovered from his injuries but struggled with a severe drug addiction caused in part by his painkillers.
More on the plane crash
It was 1977 and the band were leaving South Carolina for a show in Louisiana.
The plane ran out of fuel, prompting the pilots to attempt a crash landing.
The devastating accident left Rossington with two broken legs, arms, ankles and a shattered pelvis.
More tributes pour in, continued
Fans continue to flock to Twitter to pay tribute to the legendary guitarist.
“Damned. Rip Gary Rossington. True legend in the rock ‘n’ roll world,” wrote one fan.
Another added: “Rest in peace with your bandmates Gary Rossington. Your music will live on forever!”
More awards are pouring in
After learning of Gary Rossington’s death, fans continue to contribute to the tributes.
A fan wrote: “Rest In Peace guitar legend Gary Rossington from Lynyrd Skynyrd.”
Another wrote: “RIP Gary Rossington. Now you are all together again.”
A film was released about the band’s plane crash
In 2020, American musical survival drama film Street Survivors: The True Story of the Lynyrd Skynyrd Plane Crash directed by Jared Cohn and written by Cohn and Brian Perera was released.
The film premiered at the 2020 Hollywood Reel Independent Film Festival and was released on DVD in late June of the same year.
Top five streamed songs on Spotify
Lynyrd Skynyrd has amassed more than 1 million streams on popular music streaming service Spotify.
Her top 5 streamed songs include:
- Sweet Home Alabama (1,052,765,630 Streams)
- Free Bird (475,419,597 streams)
- Simple Man (355,946,760 streams)
- Give me three steps (155,466,417 streams)
- Tuesday’s Gone (104,518,785 streams)
Notes published by Lynyrd Skynyrd
Lynyrd Skynyrd has released a plethora of albums throughout their historical career.
The band has released 14 studio albums, 6 live albums and 5 video albums.
Lead guitarist Gary Rossington was the last original member of the band after it was confirmed he died on Sunday.
Guitarist pays tribute
Guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd paid tribute to Gary Rossington on Twitter after learning of the late icon’s death.
He wrote: “Rest in peace my man. @garyrossington One of the best ever made. And thank you and @skynyrd for all the great memories on the road over the years.”
“One day we had everything, the next day there was nothing”
Gary Rossington commented on the horrific plane crash that claimed the lives of most of his bandmates.
Rossington was the only remaining member because the others tragically passed away over the years.
In 1977, Van Zant died in a tragic plane crash that also injured Rossington and Collins.
Original members of Lynyrd Skynyrd
Formed in the summer of 1964, there were five original members from Jacksonville, Florida.
These members included:
- Garry Rossington
- Ronnie vanZant
- Bob Burns
- Larry Junstorm
Previous heart problems
In October 2015, Rossington suffered a heart attack and in 2018 he told the Tampa Bay Times that he previously survived quintuple bypass surgery.
He also told the newspaper that he had “many” heart attacks on stage.
While the band is currently touring, the Facebook post states that Rossington “encouraged the band to perform in his absence.”
“After the country shut down last year and everything we’ve all been through, The Rossington’s encouraged the band to perform in his absence,” the band said. “Music is a powerful healer! We all felt playing the shows and bringing the music to you all was a better option than canceling the performances.”
Rossington’s Fame and Fortune
As an American musician and founder of Lynyrd, Skynyrd is having a nice payday.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Rossington has an estimated net worth of $40 million.
Before going by the name Lynyrd Skynyrd, the band was originally called The Noble Five and The One Perfect.
Since 1991, the band has sold over 20 million albums and produced 14 studio albums.
Rossington was the only original member of the band and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.
Millions of albums sold
Since 1991, the band has sold 28 million albums in the US since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking sales.
This figure does not include album sales for the band’s first 17 years.
Honors continue to flood social media
Friends and fellow rock legends have taken to social media to mourn the premature star and remember his illustrious career.
“Gary was not just a friend but a collaborator who wrote songs with me and played guitar with me so much in the studio and on stage,” country singer Travis Tritt said in a tweet after admitting that he heart was broken
“My heart goes out to Dale and the girls.”
Southern rock legend Charlie Daniels said, “The last of the Free Birds has flown home.”
survived plane crash
Rossington made history for surviving a horrific plane crash in 1977 that took the lives of four bandmates, including frontman Ronnie Van Zant.
The surviving guitarist broke both legs, arms, ankles and his pelvis in the devastating crash.
The group had just released their fifth studio album, which was a hit.
Rossington previously had surgery
On July 23, 2021, the band announced that Rossington was recovering from heart surgery.
“After the country shut down over the past year and everything we’ve all been through, The Rossington’s have encouraged the band to perform in his absence,” the band wrote in a now heartbreaking statement.
“He wants everyone to know that he is doing well and that he is expecting a full recovery.
The cause of death
No information was given about the cause of his death at this time.
statement of the band
The band have released a statement informing the public of the legendary guitarist’s passing.
The explanation is:
“It is with our deepest sympathy and sadness that we have to announce that today we have lost our brother, friend, family member, songwriter and guitarist Gary Rossington,” the band wrote in a statement.
“Gary is in heaven now with his Skynyrd brothers and family, playing it up nicely like he always does.
“Please keep Dale, Mary, Annie and the entire Rossington family in your prayers and respect the family’s privacy at this difficult time.”
Gary Rossington has died
The last surviving original member of legendary American rock band Lynyrd Skynyrd has died after years of struggling with health.
Gary Rossington, the lead guitarist who started the band in 1964, died on Sunday, a spokesman confirmed. He was 71.
https://www.the-sun.com/entertainment/7555984/gary-rossington-death-updates-lynyrd-skynyrd-guitarist/ Gary Rossington Death Updates – Legendary guitarist Lynyrd Skynyrd dies as tributes pour in