Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Dec 7th 2011 10:16AM by Jason MacNeil
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According to The Mirror, she died from pancreatic cancer while surrounded by her sons. She was diagnosed in April, mere days before what would've been Roy's 75th birthday -- another ironic twist of fate.
Following the tragic death of his wife Claudette in a motorcycle accident in 1966, Orbison met Barbara Anne Marie Wilhonnen Jacobs in Leeds, England in the summer of 1968. Jacobs moved to the U.S. later that year before the two, aged 17 and 32, married on May 25, 1969 in Nashville. The couple built a home in Hendersonville, Tennessee, one block from Orbison's old home which was destroyed by fire, killing two of Orbison's three children.
"Roy transitioned well from the '50s into the '60s," Barbara told Spinner in an interview earlier this year. "In the '70s he was basically rebuilding a life. He didn't want to do anything except be somebody in love, with a little money and lots of fun. By the '80s, he was ready again."
Orbison passed away in 1988 from a heart attack at the age of 52 in the midst of a comeback tour with the Traveling Wilburys. Thanks to the attention from the Wilburys and his posthumous release 'Mystery Girl,' Barbara continued to release her husband's material on her Orbison Records label.
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Earlier this year Barbara also oversaw 'The Monument Singles Collection,' a two-CD/one-DVD compilation featuring the 'Only the Lonely' singer's biggest hits and B-sides. "I told them, I can't do another 'Greatest Hits,'" she told Spinner. "I'm here to do one thing -- to pass on the history of this incredible man and artist called Roy Orbison."
In addition to overseeing Orbison's extensive catalog, Barbara also created her own fragrance line called Pretty Woman Perfume. And her Still Working Music publishing company represented some of the industry's biggest names, including Taylor Swift and her hit 'You Belong to Me,' which was the BMI Song of the Year in 2010.
Musicians and celebrities continue to express their condolences via Twitter, including Sharon Osbourne. "Such a sad day to hear about the passing of Barbara Orbison," she wrote."She was a lovely gracious woman & an amazing mother. She will be greatly missed."
Barbara Orbison is survived by sons Wesley, Roy Kelton Jr. and Alexander (who is the drummer for Los Angeles band Whitestarr). She will be buried beside her husband at the Westwood Village Memorial Park in Los Angeles. Following a private graveside ceremony, the family will announce plans for a reception celebrating her life at BMI offices in Nashville. Donations in her memory can be made to the Roy Orbison Foundation. The family also requests messages be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.