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Please pray for our family as we mourn the loss of Rick's brother....

Sheryl

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Death's timing is never convenient! Please know Cindy that I am praying for you and your family. He sounds like a beautiful soul who brightened many lives. The heavenly choir surely is sweeter with his talents. It's tough to get through these surreal days; I wish I could hold your hand and let you know you are not alone in this difficult walk. His joy of life will live on through you and your family.
 

thinze3

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Rick and Cindy -
I'm a little late but just found this thread. I am sorry for your loss and will say a prayer for you guys. Stay strong and God bless.
 

Born2Travel

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Cindy - our sympathy as well. It's never easy.
 

smcintos

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Cindy and Rick, Im so sorry for you guys. I did not know Ronnie but if he was anything like Rick he must have been a great guy.

My prayers are with you
Steve McIntosh
 

Carol C

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Cindy, you and Rick and your entire family have my heartfelt condolences.
 

rickandcindy23

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Thanks for the thoughts and prayers. It's been a tough time for all of us. :( We were going to see Ronnie play at B.B. King's, NYC, in May. Ronnie knew we were going to be there and was excited we were going to come to see him play. We hadn't seen him perform since September of 2004.

Ronnie told me he would be there for Rick, if Rick got prostate cancer. Their dad had it, then Ronnie, and Rick is seven years younger, so of course there is a good chance that Rick, and Mike, too, will deal with it at some point. Rick is the youngest of the three boys.

Ronnie had the sweetest telephone voice. You could hear the smile on the other end. Know what I mean? He had such a quiet voice, and he was so very nice to me.

Sammy Hagar is putting together some sort of memorial concert for Ronnie. There was no funeral service because Ronnie wouldn't have wanted it. We talked to Ronnie's wife, and she said Sammy is planning this for about a month out. We will very likely be on Maui and won't be able to go. Rick's stepmom will be with us on Maui.

That's a shame, but I am sure his kids and grandkids will be there to represent the family.

Someone asked if I had a story. I don't really have a great story related to his music, just a few little bits of things that stick out in my mind. Rick and I went to some of his concerts and enjoyed them, and I met his band back in 1974, including Sammy Hagar. But it wasn't really my kind of music. It was really exciting when the music played on the radio at work, and everyone would say, "Hey, Ronnie's song is on..." People never believe you, when you are 19 and say you are related to Ronnie Montrose. I know they didn't believe Ronnie was Rick's brother, and I didn't care.

Ronnie's band played on Midnight Special years and years ago. Remember that show? Anyway, he was wearing suspenders, which I remember vividly, and he was so energetic during that performance. He was always energetic, but this particular time, he was jumping up and down like crazy. I wondered if he was just giddy with excitement about that show, or if he was always like that (or maybe it was drugs?). His back paid him back for all of that jumping, later in life. He had terrible back pain, same as Rick.

When Rick's band (most are firefighters, and the drummer is a mortician) started playing Ronnie's music, then I heard it enough that I became a fan. This is only over the last four years or so.... They play Bad Motor Scooter, Rock Candy, and a few others. I now understand why people love the music. I told Ronnie that a few months ago, and he just laughed.

He played "Town Without Pity" at my request at his own wedding in 2004. I loved the way he played that song, and I was a big fan of his rendition, and a few others, specifically on the Open Fire album. He always sent us several copies of his albums, when they first came out.

Ronnie loved to sit on our patio swing in the summer and watch the night sky during a lightning storm, as he smoked his favorite cigar (which I wouldn't let him smoke inside). He said he never gets to see that kind of lighting activity in California.

He stayed with us during his few visits. Always the perfect guest. He restrung Rick's guitar the last time he was here because the strings were hurting his fingers as he played it. I was surprised he would have guitar strings in his luggage, even when he was here for their dad's funeral.

Ronnie had a layover in Denver between a tour and going home. He invited us to visit with him and Leighsa there for about three hours. It was Helen (stepmom), Mike and his wife, and the two of us. Ronnie didn't want all of the nieces and nephews (considerable number of those). This was a few months ago, probably October. We chose a restaurant at the airport and he called to ask where we were. We went into the hallway to watch for his arrival. He was wearing a hat, had his guitar case tucked around behind him, and he had a huge smile on his face. That is the image that is etched in my mind, and Rick's too.

We saw Ronnie quite a bit two years ago, when we went to SF and stayed at Powell Place. He and his wife picked us up at the hotel and took us to a restaurant at Half-Moon Bay (is that what it's called?), which was a drive out of SF. It was a great seafood place, and it was my first time eating clam chowder. It was delicious. That's a great memory because we just sat and watched the water, eating great food and catching up on the family news.

Ronnie loved showing us his favorite things in SF that trip. I told him I didn't like riding BART and wasn't looking forward to the airport run. So he and Leighsa picked us up on our last day and took us to their house for a long visit, then to the airport. He always had time for family. He loved San Francisco. He was so happy there. He was born in SF, and when he ran away at 17, he went back to SF. He was too young to remember living there as a child, so maybe it was just a coincidence. He was drawn there. Even when he lived in LA for a while, he wanted to be back in the SF area.

Thanks for letting me go on and on. :bawl:
 

Passepartout

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Cindy, what a wonderful remembrance. It made Ronnie come alive for me. We have a radio personality here on our statewide public radio station (much more than a DJ) every Saturday morning. Today he played a whole hour set of Ronnie's great and somewhat obscure music. Every couple or three songs he'd tell why Ronnie was special to him. And made him special to other listeners, I'm sure.

Thanks, through the tears in my eyes and the lump in my throat.

Jim
 

pjrose

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I've just listened to some of his music via the links in the articles above and in post 16. Wow, what a talent, and it doesn't seem to have diminished over the years. I loved listening to some of your reminiscences too

{{HUGS}}
 

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so sorry for your loss, sounds like he was a great person and although I personally don't know his music, I'll give it a listen to when I get to work on Monday and have high speed!
 

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Cindy,
Our local 'Scene' insert in the Friday paper had a write-up about Ronnie from Sammy Hagar (from the LA Times I think). I thought it was a nice remembrance with some history of those two.
 

rickandcindy23

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There is a memorial concert on 4/29 in the Bay Area. Sammy will be there performing, along with a lot of other people who knew Ronnie well. I think Ronnie's band will play, and they replaced Ronnie with another guitar player. Somehow, that seems so wrong...

Ronnie's friend Glen was lining up the talent, and we have yet to hear about this concert's specifics from anyone who is in the know. Rick may have to call Ronnie's wife and find out about it. But we will be in Orlando that week, so I doubt we will go. I wish they would change the date, so we can attend, if Rick even wants to. It's really all about the music for these guys, and he was a brother to Rick.
 

rickandcindy23

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The news of Ronnie's cause of death has now gone viral on the net.

Mourning is longer when the cause of death is suicide. Rick is having a very difficult time. So sad.
 

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The news of Ronnie's cause of death has now gone viral on the net.

Mourning is longer when the cause of death is suicide. Rick is having a very difficult time. So sad.
I thought of you when I read about it the other day.

None of us were there inside Ronnie's head. None of us has the right to judge.

It is so tempting to think of the "if onlys." If only I'd called. If only I'd told him how much I love him. If only I'd known he was in pain. If only, if only, if only. Don't go there.

If anyone is responsible, it would be Ronnie and it is questionable whether or not he can be held responsible. The brain is a complex organ. Unfortunately, when it goes haywire, it can have dire consequences. As I stated, none of us knows exactly what was going on inside his head and whether or not this was a mindful decision or a glitch in the wiring.

Hugs to you and to Rick. Be at peace. Let Ronnie be in peace.
 

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prayers coming your way..
 

ricoba

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I also thought of you and this thread when I saw the news that it was a suicide. This must be a hard time for both of you. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
 

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I wish Peace to all Ronnie's family and friends. Time will heal.

Jim
 

rickandcindy23

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It was Ronnie's second wife who called us the night Ronnie killed himself. She is someone we still talk to weekly because she loved him for 40 years of his life. We didn't divorce her--Ronnie did. He knew how much she loved him. They were married longer than any of the other wives he had (there were five he actually married, but so many others we met and/ or knew about).

I am so glad she told us because Ronnie's current wife of four years, Leighsa, hadn't told us anything, and it spared us from the shock of hearing it from a friend or acquaintance of ours. The next morning, our phone was ringing off the hook. The various news stations and the internet had the story early that morning.

We knew he shot himself and that he was drunk at 11:30 am that day. This was an impulsive act. It's that simple. People want to know why he did it, and I cannot imagine why, and neither can anyone else. He was going with his son and grandkids to the archery range and show off for the grandkids. He was looking forward to it. He was one day from finishing a DVD of a concert in Napa.

No one can know what is going on in another person's head. He had complications of the prostate cancer that bothered him, as any man who had prostaste cancer treatment can attest. Sammy Hagar paid for Ronnie's cancer treatment, and Ronnie used Sammy's doctor. We are so grateful to him for providing the doctor, the wherewithal and the emotional support

Explaining it away by going back through his life is a waste of time. Some are doing that today, and the articles have lots of quotes from a grieving wife who really seems to be trying to figure out why herself. I think it's unfair of the media to publish her ramblings about him.

Ronnie was sensitive, that's true, and most artists are far more sensitive than the average person walking around. That's why we loved him so.

Thanks for listening.

So the tribute concert is 4/27, and we will be in Orlando at Disneyworld. At first, we were disappointed to miss the concert, but now we are glad we aren't going. Most of the proceeds are going to his wife to pay off debt. The tickets were very expensive for standing room. Ronnie didn't believe in expensive concerts, so it's so unlike him.

Ronnie will not be there at the concert, and for that reason, we are glad we won't be there.

I found a wonderful set of CD's on Amazon that included his Open Fire album. I love "Town Without Pity" the way Ronnie played it. We listened to the CD's on the way to see our grandkids for Easter dinner (our kids too), and we got to a song on one of the Montrose CD's, which is sung entirely by Ronnie. It's called, "We're Going Home." I thought Rick would have to pull off the highway, he was crying so hard. The song talks about no more tears, no more sadness, we're going home... Ronnie hated touring, and he loved coming home after he went on tour, but this day was a different meaning.

It was the only solo Ronnie ever sang that I know of. :bawl:
 

carl2591

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i remember his music well. he will be missed by many, me included.

Rest in Peace Ronnie.
 

Timeshare Von

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I also thought of you and this thread when I saw the news that it was a suicide. This must be a hard time for both of you. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Likewise Cindy . . . you have been in my thoughts this week after this news went public. Regardless of what caused his final breath, he has left loved ones behind who will grieve the loss. Don't let others define Ronnie's life or his death. I wish there was some sage words of wisdom I could pass on for your brother and others.

Von
 

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No one can know what is going on in another person's head....

Explaining it away by going back through his life is a waste of time ...

You are very right. I am so sorry for your loss Cindy.

Suicide is such a dreadful, but increasingly prevalent problem. So many people are touched by it and it throws a whole different spin on the grieving process for families and individuals. My thoughts are with you and your family.
 

Patri

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I pass no judgment on anyone who commits suicide. They are hurting and see no way out. No different than a terminal illness etc.
My deepest sympathies.
 

rickandcindy23

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Seven years ago today, Ronnie took his own life, and I truly believe he went to heaven because he would give the shirt off of his back, the last dime from his pocket, to anyone in need. He was cynical, but he was brilliant and an artist, and a musician, and he was everything to his kids and grandkids. It still stings. No more calls from that sweet man with that quiet voice. So kind.
 
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