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Celine Dion's husband Rene Angelil loses cancer battle

Published 15/01/2016

Rene Angelil with wife Celine Dion
Rene Angelil with wife Celine Dion

Rene Angelil, the husband and manager of Celine Dion, has died after battling cancer.

A post on the singer's official Facebook page confirmed the news on Thursday, saying: "It is with deep sadness that we announce that Rene Angelil, aged 73, died this morning ... in Las Vegas after a long and courageous fight against cancer."

The family asked to be left alone to mourn in private.

Angelil was born in Montreal to a Canadian mother and Syrian father. He was in a music group called Les Baronets until 1972, when he began to manage the careers of several singers.

In 1980 Dion's mother sent him an audio tape of her then 12-year-old daughter. He took her on and launched her first English-language album in 1990.

Angelil crafted Dion's career, propelling her to international success.

The couple, who were 26 years apart in age, married in an elaborate ceremony in 1994.

The star won Grammy awards for songs including My Heart Will Go On, the theme to the popular Titanic film starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet.

Dion returned to her residency at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in August 2015 after taking a year off to care for her husband.

Angelil is survived by Dion and their three children, Rene-Charles, who was born in 2001 and twins Nelson and Eddy, who arrived in 2010.

He also has a son and daughter from his previous two marriages.

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