Meat Loaf 'seriously ill with COVID-19' before death

Meat Loaf dead at 74

Legendary singer-and-actor Meat Loaf has died at the age of 74.

A statement on his official Facebook page read: "Our hearts are broken to announce that the incomparable Meat Loaf passed away tonight with his wife Deborah by his side. Daughters Pearl and Amanda and close friends have been with him throughout the last 24 hours.

"His amazing career spanned 6 decades that saw him sell over 100 Million albums worldwide and star in over 65 movies, including “Fight Club”, “Focus”, “Rocky Horror Picture Show” and “Wayne’s World.”“Bat Out of Hell” remains one of the top 10 selling albums of all time.

"We know how much he meant to so many of you and we truly appreciate all of the love and support as we move through this time of grief in losing such an inspiring artist and beautiful man."

Meat Loaf reportedly died after contracting COVID-19.

Although his team didn't share a cause of death, TMZ reports he had been "seriously ill" with the virus.

Sources told the outlet that Meat had been due to attend a business dinner earlier this week for the dating show he'd been working on, 'I'd Do Anything for Love', but the engagement was cancelled after he fell ill, and the rocker's condition quickly became critical.

It is unclear whether the star was vaccinated, but according to the website, Meat had recently been supporting those critical of vaccine mandates in Australia.

The 'Paradise by the Dashboard Light' singer had previously branded the virus "a drag" and questioned the ongoing impact the pandemic had had on the entertainment industry.

He wrote in October 2020: "Hello everyone, nothing going on at all. That's a drag. Covid is a drag. Where I live things are open and thriving. The entertainment world hubs are in lockdown. WHY?"

It was previously revealed Meat's loved ones were with him in the hours leading up to his death.

Born Marvin Lee Aday, the iconic star - who later changed his first name to Michael - has struggled with ill health in recent years and was previously left unable to stand up for longer than five minutes due to a nerve issue in his back - meaning he was forced to spend most of the time sitting down.

He explained at the time: "I don't do drugs. I don't drink. I have a pinched nerve in my back and it feels like when I stand up to walk, that Norman Bates from Psycho is stabbing me in the back. And it hurts like hell."

He also collapsed during performances in 2003, 2011 and 2016.

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