Friday, May 15, 2015

He Bent Notes To Make Them Cry

From his official website, B.B. King sent a message on May 1, 2015 to his fans announcing, “I am in home hospice care at my residence in Las Vegas. Thanks to all for your well wishes and prayers.”

The voice that gave us honey-sweet vocals and passionate licks on his beloved guitar Lucille fell silent today.

B.B. King was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 1990 at the age to 64.  He lived his life on the road sometimes spending 300 days a year performing.  His lifestyle made it difficult to follow the measures needed to prevent or reduce complications associated with the disease.

He had been rushed to the hospital in late 2014 forcing him to cancel his remaining performances.  Published reports say his daughters suspected his manager of stealing his money and neglecting his medical care.  They told a judge they had been blocked from seeing their father and accused manager, Laverne Toney, of elder abuse.

Reports say the cause of death was dehydration and exhaustion.  As a person with diabetes, I spent many years traveling across the country as a mentor giving presentations on managing diabetes and how to achieve good blood sugar control through helpful suggestions and encouragement so that people could enjoy a healthier life.

Today, I am saddened to hear of the passing of “The King of Blues.”  His suffering is over.  May he rest in peace.

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