Rock Icon Tom Petty Dead at 66

Photo Courtesy / The Daily Beast Petty’s hit songs include “Free Falling” and “Wildflowers." Photo Courtesy / The Daily Beast
Petty’s hit songs include “Free Falling” and “Wildflowers."

By Kathleen Kraemer
Staff Writer

Tom Petty, 66 year-old American rock legend, died on Monday night at UCLA Santa Monica Hospital.

TMZ reports indicate that Petty’s wife Dana York found him unconscious, barely breathing and in full cardiac arrest around 11 p.m. Sunday night.

Petty was then rushed to the hospital and put on life support, but according to TMZ there were no signs of brain activity.

TMZ was the first to break the news on Monday afternoon that Petty had been hospitalized. Other news outlets began to echo this report.

A half hour later, TMZ reported that Petty’s life support had been pulled.

As with the initial report, several news outlets began picking up the report of Petty’s death. Unfortunately, though, these reports were erroneous.

After receiving backlash TMZ then issued a correction stating that Petty was “still clinging to life” but was not expected to survive the day.

CBS and many other organizations began to retract their stories and issue corrections.

On Monday night, Petty’s manager tweeted that Petty had officially passed at 8:40 p.m., “surrounded by his friends, family, and bandmates.”

Petty had just completed a 40th anniversary tour with his band Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. The tour began in April, and concluded on Sept. 25, only a week prior to his death.

When The Rolling Stone interviewed Petty at the onset of the tour, he told them he thought this tour would be the last hurrah for the band.

He said, “We’re all on the backside of our sixties. I have a granddaughter now I’d like to see as much as I can. I don’t want to spend my life on the road.”

Unfortunately, this was the last hurrah for Petty, and fans are all left heartbroken.

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