Singer announced lung cancer diagnosis in March
Singer BJ Thomas has died aged 78 following complications with lung cancer.
The five-time Grammy winner, who was best known for his popular version of the song “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head”, died at his home in Arlington, Texas, on Saturday (29 May).
“It is with profound sadness we confirm the passing of BJ Thomas,” a statement shared on his Twitter read.
Born Billie Joe Thomas in 1942, the musician had hits across the genres of pop, country and gospel in the 1960s and 1970s.
He originally performed with musical group The Triumphs, but went on to work as a solo artist. Some of his most popular songs included “Hooked on a Feeling” in 1968 and “(Hey Won’t You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song” in 1975.
His version of “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head” featured in the film Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, winning the Oscar for Best Original Song and topping the charts.
Thomas had announced in March that he had been diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, writing in a statement on his website: “I just wanted to take this unique opportunity to share my gratitude to Gloria, my wonderful wife and my rock for over 53 years, my family, friends, and fans.”
He continued: “All I am is just another guy. I’ve been very lucky. I’ve had a wonderful life, I’ve been a husband and a father who cherishes his children and now I’m a grandfather, and I’m motivated like all these teachers and preachers and mothers and fathers to help my kids grow up with character and self-respect.
“I hope that doesn’t sound too grandiose, but that’s what it comes down to. It’s what I’ve tried to do with my music and with the majority of my life.”
Thomas is survived by his wife Gloria Richardson, who he married in 1968, three daughters Paige Thomas, Nora Cloud, and Erin Moore, and four grandchildren.