The passing of a legend happened over the weekend as Ronnie James Dio passed away. The question is, when did he really die? I know for most, it does not matter.
I was told early Saturday evening that Ronnie James Dio passed away from a battle with stomach cancer. I was asked to sit on the story for a couple hours so family could know. To me, a couple means 2 hours, and I went with the story just before midnight on the East Coast, Saturday night.
Someone then edited Dio's wikipedia page to say he died. I had nothing to do with that. The comments started rolling in to name my source and, obviously, I was not going to do that. I sent the news to TMZ.com as well but as usual, never heard back from them.
Then Blabbermouth.com gets word from Wendy Dio that he is not dead and metalsludge.com tries to retract the story and put some of the blame on me. Funny, but when they went with the story, no credit, now that they think it is wrong, they name me.
I contact my source and they tell me Ronnie has died, it is just that Wendy has not contacted all the family yet and does not want it to be public. Wendy gave a hint as she said "he is not doing well" but at the same time, Rio's official page and Facebook page went quiet. No denial on either site but only an unofficial Twitter account.
I read on sludge and blabbermouth of people wishing me harm for putting out a story that he died. I can understand where Wendy is coming from and out of respect and talking with my source, locked the post. I hated doing that but if not all family knew and that is something that Wendy wanted, I would lock it. My source said they will be talking crap about you tonight but by tomorrow morning, they will know you were legit.
Wendy made the announcement that he died on Sunday morning, May 16th, 2010 although he passed away Saturday night, May 15th, 2010. The reason I am told is that some family did see my story on the sites and were hurt they did not know. So, by Wendy changing the date, they are comforted in the solice that they knew first.
When the news hit that he did die, because of the date change, they thought my story was a "hoax" and the credit of blame that Blabbermouth.com and Metalsludge.com were throwing on me the night before, they were not crediting me by being right.
L.A. radio DJ's that talked about Ronnie on Sunday and were close friends even said he passed away last night, referring to Saturday night. Good Day L.A. got it right as well by reporting that he passed away over the weekend and did not say the date of Sunday.
Just to see E! online and other news outlets state that his death came from his wikipedia page and not from Drfunkenberry.com did upset me. You are willing to give me the blame but again, when the story is true, none of the credit.
I went from being hated on for saying he died, to when the truth came out, being hated on for being first. Look, I wish I was wrong. It's not about that. But when you "lift" info as your own, then retract it and then blame it on someone else only when it is true, not credit the source, that is the distasteful journalism.
I broke the news because I felt the fans of Ronnie James Dio deserved to know. They loved him. He was one of the greatest voices in all of metal, if not the greatest period. I did not know I would create such a firestorm because I thought it would be public knowledge shortly after I broke it.
People have asked for an explanation and that is all I am giving. It is not going to bring Dio back, but I did what I thought was fair and right. Regardless, a legend passed away this weekend and in the end, that's all that matters.-Dr.FB