There's sad news to report this weekend as former Obituary and current Gogoroth bassist Frank Watkins has passed away at the age of 47. The musician, pictured at far left in the photo above, had been battling cancer and reportedly passed Sunday morning (Oct. 18).

Watkins music career began in 1985, playing with the band Sacrosanct. His tenure in the group was short lived as he moved on to Bad Rep the following year and played two years with Hellwitch. His big break came in 1989 when he took over bass duties from Daniel Tucker in Obituary, where he remained until 1997.

During his first stint with Obituary, he appeared on the Cause of Death, The End Complete, World Demise and Back From the Dead albums, as well as the Don't Care EP and the Dead concert album. After a break from the band, Watkins returned in 2003 and his second stint lasted until 2010. During this period, he appeared on the Frozen in Time, Xecutioner's Return and Darkest Day albums, as well as the Left to Die EP.

In 2007, Watkins was invited to join Norwegian black metal outfit Gorgoroth. He performed under the moniker Bøddel, which translates to "Executioner" in English. While playing with Gorgoroth, the bassist appeared on 2009's Quantos Possunt ad Satanitatem Trahunt album and this year's Instinctus Bestialis disc.

Gorgoroth issued a brief statement on their website that read: "Rest in peace Frank Watkins (19.02.1968-18.10.2015). He will be missed." Obituary also issued a brief statement that read, "Just got the very sad news that Frank passed away this morning. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family."

We at Loudwire extend our condolences to Watkins family, as well as his extended music families in Gorgoroth and Obituary.

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