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Has Lionel Richie Passed Away? Debunking The Rumors – Health And Illness Update

Rumors surrounding Lionel Richie passed away have been on the internet for the past few days. However, this information is untrue.

Lionel Brockman Richie Jr. is a multifaceted American artist known for his roles as a singer, songwriter, record producer, and television personality.

He initially gained prominence in the 1970s as a member of the Motown group Commodores, where he served as a co-lead singer and songwriter, contributing to hit singles such as “Easy,” “Sail On,” “Three Times a Lady,” and “Still” before embarking on a solo career.

In 1980, Richie penned and produced the chart-topping single “Lady” for Kenny Rogers, marking a significant milestone in his career.

The following year, he collaborated with Diana Ross on the single “Endless Love,” which became one of the bestselling singles of all time, solidifying Richie’s reputation as a prolific songwriter and performer.

Lionel Richie Passed Away? Lionel Richie, An American Singer, Songwriter, Record Producer, And Television Personality
Lionel Richie, An American Singer, Songwriter, Record Producer, And Television Personality (Source: Instagram)

In 1982, Richie launched his solo career with the release of his self-titled album, which achieved widespread success, selling over four million copies and featuring hit singles like “You Are,” “My Love,” and the number one hit “Truly.”

His second album, “Can’t Slow Down” (1983), further propelled Richie to international stardom, reaching number one on the US Billboard 200 chart and selling over 20 million copies worldwide.

The album produced hit singles including “All Night Long (All Night)” and “Hello.”

In addition to his musical achievements, Richie has also ventured into television, notably serving as a judge on the singing competition American Idol since its sixteenth season in 2018.

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Has Lionel Richie Passed Away? Debunking The Rumors

Lionel Richie was born on June 20, 1949, in Tuskegee, Alabama, to parents Lionel Brockman Richie, a U.S. Army systems analyst, and Alberta R. Foster, a teacher and school principal.

His grandmother, Adelaide Mary Brown, was a talented pianist known for playing classical music.

On March 4, 2011, Richie appeared on NBC’s Who Do You Think You Are?, where it was discovered that his maternal great-grandfather was likely the biological son of federal judge and slaveowner Morgan Welles Brown.

Morgan Welles Brown was also a national leader of an early Black American fraternal organization.

Recently rumors about Lionel Richie passed away have been circulating over the media, which is definitely a false gossip.

However, Richie has faced several health challenges throughout his esteemed career, with one of the most serious being a throat condition that nearly ended his singing career.

Rumors About Lionel Richie Passed Away Is False
Rumors About Lionel Richie Passed Away Is False (Source: Instagram)

Despite his health battles, including undergoing grueling surgeries, Lionel has persevered to continue his career.

He was scheduled to headline King Charles III’s Coronation alongside Katy Perry, demonstrating his resilience and determination to overcome obstacles.

The pressures and setbacks took a toll on Lionel, and he admitted to being on the verge of a “nervous breakdown” at one point.

There were fears that his solo career, which was thriving in the 1980s, would come crashing down due to his health issues.

However, Lionel‘s resilience and dedication to his craft have allowed him to push through these challenges and continue to pursue his passion for music.

Amid a challenging divorce from his first wife Brenda Harvey and while caring for his sick father, Lionel Richie faced a personal battle with his health.

For some time, the cause of his pain remained a mystery to doctors, who warned him that he could potentially lose his singing voice forever.

This uncertainty led Lionel to undergo four grueling surgeries on his throat, all of which proved to be unsuccessful.

Reflecting on this difficult period in 2012, Lionel admitted that he had been through four surgeries, including vocal surgeries. And while being him at that time, his own identity made him question his existence.

If he, a singer, who is defined by his voice, couldn’t sing anymore in the future, what was the point of being an artist?

It wasn’t until later that one doctor finally identified the root cause of Lionel’s health issues: diet-induced acid reflux, which was affecting his throat.

This condition, characterized by the sensation of heartburn as stomach acid travels back up towards the throat, had been exacerbated by Lionel's consumption of ice cream, protein powder, and weight gain shakes before bed – foods notorious for being difficult to digest and known to trigger acid reflux.

Lionel Richie – Health And Illness Update

In 2014, Lionel Richie faced the difficult decision of undergoing a hip replacement due to battling arthritis, which had significantly impacted his ability to tour as he had done in the past.

He attributed his joint pain to years of dancing, particularly in platform heels.

Reflecting on the toll that his earlier fashion choices had taken on his body, Lionel acknowledged, “Since the Commodore days, we don’t wear those big boots anymore because of the knees and the ankles.”

Lionel Richie Passed Away? Lionel Richie Faced A Torn Meniscus In His Knee
Lionel Richie Faced A Torn Meniscus In His Knee (Source: Instagram)

This shift in footwear was a result of the physical strain placed on his joints from years of performing in platform heels.

In 2017, Lionel Richie faced another health scare when he feared that a torn meniscus in his knee could potentially bring his career to an end.

Despite initially attempting to downplay the issue and push through with his performances, he eventually underwent laparoscopic knee surgery to address the condition.

Speaking about his experience, Lionel admitted that one goes into denial and would think they just have a little knee problem and continue doing shows.

Fortunately, the surgery was successful, and Lionel was able to recover fully, allowing him to continue his career without the limitations imposed by his knee injury.

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Deepa Shrestha
Deepa Shrestha
Deepa Shrestha, a dedicated undergraduate student, adept editor and passionate writer with a talent for producing compelling articles. Beyond her academic commitments, she skillfully maneuvers through the landscape of celebrity gossip and TV shows, offering a distinctive viewpoint on the realms of cinema and pop culture.

Expertise: Netflix Observer Indie Film Expert


  • Recognized for her expertise in providing cultural commentary within the realm of entertainment
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  • Experience

    Deepa Shrestha, an experienced writer at Superfestfilm, seamlessly blends cultural insights into her work. Her articles offer a fresh take on the entertainment industry, inviting readers to explore the vibrant tapestry of cultures through the lens of captivating storytelling.



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