60s pop star Bobby Vee dies after battle with Alzheimer’s

You might remember Bobby Vee’s boyish looks and his hits such as Take Good Care of My Baby and Run

You might remember Bobby Vee’s boyish looks and his hits such as Take Good Care of My Baby and Run to Him in the 60s?

Well, there’s sad news today that he has died aged 73.

The singer had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2011, battling the disease privately and only performing the occasional show.

The ABC is reporting that his son Jeff Valine said he died peacefully surrounded by family.

He described his father’s death as “the end of a long hard road” and said he was “a person who brought joy all over the world.”

Vee shot to fame in 1959 as a teen, taking the stage at a concert in Minnesota to fill in after Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and JP “The Big Bopper” Richardson were killed in a plane crash.

He had 38 Top 100 hits between 1959 and 1970 including Rubber Ball, The Night Has A Thousand Eyes, Devil or Angel, Come Back When You Grow Up, Please Don’t Ask About Barbara and Punish Her.

Vee is also renowned as the man who gave Bob Dylan his start, with Dylan performing in Vee’s band before his solo career took off.

Vee was still touring right up until his Alzheimer’s diagnosis when he began having trouble remembering his lyrics.

His last performance was last year.

In a 2013 interview, Vee spoke about not wanting to put his family through a public decline.

“It’s not getting any better, I can tell you that,” he said.

“But I’m doing the best I can.”

His wife of more than 50 years, Karen, died last year from kidney failure.

Vee is survived by his four children.

  1. Glenice Thompson  

    I saw Bobby Vee in a Concert, at Festival Hall in Brisbane, in the early 1960s. He was one of my “Heart-Throbs”, as we called them in those days. He had a great singing voice, & a lot of Hits. I remember after the Concert, we used to hang around the Stage Door, to see if we could get any Autographs. In this particular Concert, there were a lot of my Favourite Singers, so we waited at the Door for quite a while. I ended up with Autographs from Bobby Vee himself, Roy Orbison, Freddy Cannon, & some Australian singers, including Col Joye & the Joye Boys.

  2. Dianne McCarthy  

    They were all great singers Glenice. I worked in the city for a while before I went nursing and every Friday the music shop in the Piccadilly Arcade used to have one of the Australian stars there promoting their records. I got some wonderful autographs and got to chap with lots of Aussie stars. There were a lot around in the early 60’s. And wasn’t it great music then. RIP Bobby Vee. I loved him. He had some great hits.

  3. Pam Walsh  

    Very sad to learn of Bobby Vee’s passing, I owned an LP of his in my twenties and played it over and over again.
    I loved all his songs, he was a one off and will be sadly missed.

  4. Linde Cavanagh  

    So sad to see another lovely person has left us Grew up listening to all his songs .May he be at peace .Thinking of his family at this sad time

  5. very sad to hear about Bobby Vee i just loved his music grew up with it .memories of love and friendship are treasures to be carry with you always, i give you my love to you all at this sad time sorry to hear about your mum as well they are both very young love jennie mitch

  6. So sad to hear of his passing . My sister and I and our friends all loved his songs and had most of his records . I loved ‘Rubber Ball’ and ‘The night has a Thousand Eyes ‘ ‘Take Good Care of my Baby’ I can still remember all the words. We would meet at my friend Marlene’s and put the records on and dance around her lounge room. He gave us many happy days to be treasured. Rest in Peace Bobby.

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