Wendy Dio gifts late husband's Black Sabbath ring to Judas Priest singer Rob Halford
In a tweet that broke the hearts of metal fans everywhere, Wendy Dio has revealed that she gifted her late husband's Sabbath ring to close friend Rob Halford.
After Deep Purple and Judas Priest announced that the two legendary rock bands would co-headline a tour together earlier this week, former Deep Purple singer Ronnie James Dio's widow Wendy has given his Black Sabbath ring to Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford. She presented the touching gift to the singer after Judas Priest's show at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles last Sunday, 22nd April.
"I've always said the first thing I remember about Ronnie was the approachable side of him," Halford said about his friend in 2014 while speaking to Loudwire. "Some people in rock 'n' roll can be a bit difficult and Ronnie was always approachable. You could speak to Ronnie about anything at any time, and I'm not just talking about being a musician, I'm talking about the fans. The fans were the life force for Ronnie James Dio. He loved his fans with a passion and it was a genuine, genuine thing."
Dio, considered to be one of the greatest rock singers of all time, performed with both Deep Purple and Black Sabbath. He replaced Black Sabbath founding member Ozzy Osbourne in 1979 following Osbourne's split with the band. He died in 2010 at the end of a six-month struggle with stomach cancer.
The former Deep Purple singer has since inspired many of the biggest names in rock and metal including Halford, Slash and Slipknot's Corey Taylor. His time with Black Sabbath was marked by how drastically different his singing style was compared to Osbourne.
"He trafficked in over-the-top romantic imagery that made him incomprehensible to outsiders (i.e. adults), but he used all his swords-and-demons imagery as a metaphor for teen angst," reads a eulogy written to him by Rolling Stone. It is somewhat comforting to see that the legendary singer is still being commemorated in some small way.