Rocker Tom Petty dead at 66

By Danielle Haynes  |  Updated Oct. 3, 2017 at 2:52 AM
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Oct. 2 (UPI) -- Grammy-winning rocker Tom Petty died Monday after being found unconscious and in cardiac arrest, his manager said.

Tony Dimitriades told TMZ, the 66-year-old died at 8:40 p.m. at UCLA Santa Monica Hospital after his family decided to take him off life support. Doctors said he had no brain activity.

The New York Times confirmed his death.

Authorities told TMZ Petty wasn't breathing and was in full cardiac arrest when he was discovered at Dimitriades's home. EMTs took him to UCLA Santa Monica Hospital, where he was put on life support.

Petty is best known as the front man of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, which formed in 1978 and had hits such as "Mary Jane's Last Dance" and "Learning to Fly." He has also had a solo career with hits like "Free Fallin'" and "American Girl."

He wrapped up a tour with the Heartbreakers on Sept. 25. Petty told Rolling Stone in December 2016 that the 40th anniversary tour would likely be his last large tour.

"It's very likely we'll keep playing, but will we take on 50 shows in one tour? I don't think so. I'd be lying if I didn't say I was thinking this might be the last big one. We're all on the backside of our 60s," he said. "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. This tour will take me away for four months. With a little kid, that's a lot of time."

Petty earned three Grammy's: Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Duo or Group for his work with the Traveling Wilburys in 1990; Best Rock Vocal Performance by a Male for "You Don't Know How it Feels" in 1996; and Best Music Video, Long Form with the Heartbreakers in 2011. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.

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