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Ronnie James Dio

Born: 1942-07-10 - Died: 2010-05-16
Cause of Death:
Stomach Cancer

Death Summary: In 2009, Dio was diagnosed with stomach cancer. Between then and now, he underwent seven chemo treatments and eventually passed away due to complications with the cancer.

Who was Ronnie James Dio : Ronnie James Dio is one of the legends of heavy metal, who's influence can be seen in the last five decades of the twentieth century. He had been performing in bands since the late 1950's, and the experience would eventually culminate into a band called Elf.

In 1969, Elf would open for the band Deep Purple. During this time, Dio became noticed by Deep Purple guitarist Ritchie Blackmore. Once Deep Purple disbanded, Dio was recruited by Blackmore who started up a band called Rainbow. The band would release three albums throughout the 1970's.

Towards the end of the 70's, Dio's career took an interesting turn when he was recruited to replace Ozzy Osbourne for the band Black Sabbath. The move was extremely controversial at the time, creating a schism between die hard Osbourne fans and those who accepted Dio. However, Sabbath's first album with Dio was a huge success and helped to revitalize the band. The arguments between Osbourne fans, and Dio fans still occur to this day. It was during his time with Black Sabbath, that Dio created the devil horns hand signature which became a moniker for the metal lifestyle.

In between his stints with Black Sabbath, Dio had a self titled band which would release some albums with various levels of success. Along with his band work, Dio organized the 'Hear N' Aid' effort in 1986 to help raise money for the famine relief in Africa.

Dio has continued playing music to his dying day. He was actually planning to return to his band, Heaven and Hell, after his latest chemo treatment. The band consisted of some of the Black Sabbath members he toured with, but the show has been canceled due to Dio's death.

Dio's heavy metal spirit could be found even in his fight with cancer, "This hasn't really been a problem for me. Cancer? I'll kick the hell out of you"
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