Ronnie Montrose’s death ruled a suicide


Rock guitarist Ronnie Montrose (AP/Prime Time Entertainment Inc.)

Montrose — who fronted his own bands and played with Van Morrison, Edgar Winter and other well-known musicians — died in his California home in March of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the San Francisco Chronicle. He was 64 at the time of his death.

Earlier reports indicated that Montrose died of complications from prostate cancer, which he was diagnosed with in 2007.

The autopsy report was confirmed in a statement on Montrose’s official Web site.

“By now, the devastating truth of Ronnie’s death is public knowledge. We hope you can understand why we wanted to keep this news a private family matter for as long as possible,” the statement said. “We can only hope that you will choose to celebrate Ronnie’s life, and what his music meant to you, rather than mourn his passing. Ronnie would have wanted it that way.”

Montrose’s wife Leighsa Montrose told the San Francisco Chronicle her husband “was tormented” and suffered from clinical depression.

“He didn't give any indication,” she said of Montrose’s suicide. “When his mind is made up you can't reason with him with logic. I guess he just let it get the better of him.”

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