The 'Love Is Alive' singer was previously diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and dementia
Gary Wright has died at the age of 80.
The composer’s son, Justin Wright, said that his father died at his home in Palos Verdes Estates, California, on Monday morning, Sept. 4. The news came approximately six years after the "Love Is Alive" singer was diagnosed with Parkinson’s and not long after, with dementia.
Justin told the outlet that as Gary’s Parkinson’s progressed, his father became unable to perform daily tasks such as moving about on his own or speaking. He died with his loved ones by his side.
Elizabeth Freund, a rep for Wright, told PEOPLE in a statement how she "first met Gary Wright in 2008 when he joined Ringo Starr’s All Starr Band, and worked with him on number of projects over the following years. He was a phenomenal musician and a truly peace and loving human being. The word devoted comes to mind."
“Very kind and very spiritual. I was always struck by his deep and enduring love for his darling wife Rose who I’m thinking of now. Your Love Is Alive - now and always Gary," Freund continued in a statement. "Thanks for the music Dream Weaver. Sending his family peace and love. RIP #garywright #ringostarrandhisallstarrband #peaceandlove.”
Gary’s industry peers confirmed his death on social media and shared their condolences.
Ambrosia co-founder David Pack shared a heartfelt message on Facebook in memory of his late friend.
“Goodbye Gary Wright. With a heavy sigh, I sadly send my love to Gary’s wife, Rose, Gary’s son, Dorian Wright, and extended family. My friend Gary Wright ascended to heaven,” Pack wrote.
Pack included a photo of the two smiling on stage as he played the guitar while Gary appeared to be clapping his hands to the music.
Pack shared that he had been a fan of Gary since his days as a member of the English rock band Spooky Tooth. “He was a legend with his breakthrough hits dream Weaver and my love is alive, as well as play keyboards on every George Harrison solo album. I truly believe Gary is in paradise and he and George are already working on new music,” Pack wrote.
The “Holdin’ on to Yesterday” musician finished his post by sharing fond memories of their time together, noting that at one point, the two were neighbors.
“He would walk to my house with a bag of fresh tomatoes from his garden with his gardening hat. That’s the real Gary, a smile on face, wanting to share with his neighbor. That’s the spirit that wrote those classic songs,” Pack added.
Stephen Bishop also paid his respects to the star.
It is with great sadness that I received the news of my dear friend Gary Wright's passing. The attached photos hold precious memories from the very first and last time we shared the stage together, alongside our mutual musical pal John Ford Coley. Gary's vibrant personality and… pic.twitter.com/r7bwnIhKME
— Stephen Bishop (@BishSongs) September 4, 2023
“It is with great sadness that I received the news of my dear friend Gary Wright's passing,” Bishop tweeted on Twitter, now known as X.
His send-off contained two photographs of himself smiling with Gary “from the very first and last time we shared the stage together, alongside our mutual musical pal John Ford Coley.”
The "Bowling in Paris" singer spoke highly of Gary, remembering the entertainer as someone whose “vibrant personality and exceptional talent made every moment together truly enjoyable.”
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“His legacy will live on for many years to come. I will always cherish the warmth and kindness shown to me by Gary and his wife Rose, and I will forever hold dear the stories he shared with me about days gone by,” Bishop said.
“My heartfelt condolences go out to his family, friends, and fans during this difficult time,” he added.
Before solidifying his mark on music, Gary was a child actor who then went on to Broadway. After starring in the musical Fanny, he studied medicine and then psychology in New York and Berlin.
In addition to Spooky Tooth, he was also a member of Wonderwheel briefly in the early 1970s and the multimember supergroup Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band. He contributed to many of the solo albums by the late Beatle George Harrison, including All Things Must Pass and Cloud Nine.
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