Former Deicide Guitarist Ralph Santolla Dead at 48 [Updated]
After recently lapsing into a coma following a heart attack, former Deicide guitarist Ralph Santolla has now passed away at the age of 48. The news comes after Santolla's son revealed earlier this week that the family intended to take the musician off of life support.
Santolla's mother, Sue Santolla-Rocha, has been offering updates throughout his recent hospital stay. On June 6, she revealed the following update:
She later added the following post:
However, Bill Hudson, a close friend of Santolla, revealed that Sue's post should not be taken literally just yet, as the guitarist was still alive:
At roughly 1AM ET this morning (June 7) Santolla was officially pronounced dead, according to a post from Hudson:
Santolla-Rocha revealed last week that the guitarist was in a Tampa hospital after suffering a heart attack earlier in the week. The guitarist had initially visited a hospital fearing he had a spider bite, only to learn it was a blood clot. A few days later, he fell and had a heart attack. While he was revived, he lapsed into a coma where he remained breathing from a ventilator until the family decided to take him off life support. His mother revealed that the guitarist was an organ donor, so he will live on through others.
Santolla had ties to a number of rock and metal acts, also playing on a pair of albums and one EP for Obituary. He also spent time as a touring musician for Death and playing guitar for Sebastian Bach and Iced Earth. His most recent project was Devil's Highway and Santolla-Rocha revealed that her son's project was near completion and would be finished and released in his honor.
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