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Family leads tributes to Wonderful Life singer Colin Vearncombe

Published 27/01/2016

Colin Vearncombe, known as Black, died after suffering head injuries in a car accident (Red Grape Music courtesy of Gisli Snaer)
Colin Vearncombe, known as Black, died after suffering head injuries in a car accident (Red Grape Music courtesy of Gisli Snaer)

Musician Colin Vearncombe, known as Black, has died after suffering head injuries in a car accident.

The singer, from Liverpool, who had a global hit in 1987 with Wonderful Life, suffered swelling on his brain in a crash near Cork Airport on January 10.

The 53-year-old had been in intensive care since then.

His death was announced on his Facebook page on Tuesday night, with the simple message: "Colin Vearncombe. 26/5/1962-26/1/2016. You'll never walk alone ."

Black's wife Camilla and his three sons paid tribute to the care he had received in Cork University Hospital since the accident.

"Colin received the best possible care from the expert and highly professional staff there and we are deeply grateful for everything they did," they said.

Black was said to have died peacefully with his family at his bedside "who were singing him on his way".

He was soon to become a grandfather, with his eldest son's child due on St Patrick's Day.

Best known for 1980s singles Sweetest Smile and Wonderful Life, Black released 15 albums under his own name and also published poetry and staged exhibitions of his paintings in Ireland, where he lived for more than 10 years.

The crash occurred as he drove on his own from his home in Schull, west Cork, to catch a flight from Cork to Edinburgh for a songwriting trip.

The funeral will be a private one and a memorial service is being planned in Liverpool in the near future with a charity for donations in his memory to be announced.

Black's management said they were aware many people will want to celebrate his life and work.

They ended the tribute with a line from his biggest hit: "No need to laugh or cry. It's a wonderful, wonderful life."

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