While details are scarce, Riot has confirmed that guitarist Mark Reale has passed away earlier today (25) due to complications from Crohn’s disease. The news was seconded by a post from Metal Blade’s Brian Slagel. Reale had been in a coma for the past two weeks due to a subarachnoid hemorrhage. The Gauntlet was the first to report on the news that he’d passed, and also has a statement from the band:
“To friends and fans of Mark Reale and Riot,
We are deeply saddened to confirm that Mark has lost his battle with a lifelong illness.
Your thoughts and prayers are appreciated by Mark’s family, friends, and bandmates at this difficult time.”
Reale had battled Crohn’s disease for the past 30 years. He was 57. Sadly, the rest of the band is currently on the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise, where they were set to play. The band had played two shows last week in support of their latest album, Immortal Soul, which featured Reale. While the show last Wednesday was a great show, news of Reale’s condition spread throughout the crowd, turning it into a more solemn affair than it would have been had he been with the band. We’ll give you more information as we get it.