Eddie Van Halen’s ex-wife Valerie Bertinelli pays tribute to former husband after his death
The actress said she was “so grateful” that she was able to be with Van Halen in his last moments
The couple’s son Wolfgang, 29, confirmed news of the rock legend’s death on Tuesday night, telling fans that his father had “lost his long and arduous battle with cancer.”
Bertinelli, an actress, married the musician in 1981. The couple separated in 2001 and eventually divorced in 2007, but are thought to have remained on good terms following the split.
Sharing a black and white photograph of her and her former partner with their son as a baby on Instagram, the 60-year-old said she was “so grateful” she and Wolfgang had been able to “hold” Van Halen in his “last moments.”
“40 years ago my life changed forever when I met you,” she wrote alongside the photo.
“You gave me the one true light in my life, our son, Wolfgang. Through all your challenging treatments for lung cancer, you kept your gorgeous spirit and that impish grin.
“I’m so grateful Wolfie and I were able to hold you in your last moments.
“I will see you in our next life my love.”
In his own tribute to his father, Wolfgang, who joined his father’s band as a bassist in 2006, wrote: “He was the best father I could ever ask for. Every moment I’ve shared with him on and off stage was a gift.
“My heart is broken and I don’t think I’ll ever fully recover from this loss.
“I love you so much, Pop.”
Van Halen formed his eponymous band in California in 1972, with David Lee Roth on vocals, his brother Alex on drums, and Michael Anthony on bass.
The group is among the top 20 best-selling artists of all time and has sold more than 80 million records worldwide.
The musician first received treatment for tongue cancer in 2000, with the subsequent surgery leading to the removal of about a third of his tongue.
He was declared cancer-free in 2002. Last year, reports surfaced that he had been diagnosed with throat cancer in 2014.