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Roy Orbison's widow dies of cancer

Barbara Orbison, the widow and manager of rock 'n' roll pioneer Roy Orbison, has died on the 23rd anniversary of her husband's death.

The 60-year-old died from pancreatic cancer at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Centre on Tuesday surrounded by her sons, her publicist Sarah McMullen said. Mrs Orbison had been in hospital since May.

Since the 1980s, Barbara Orbison devoted her time to managing her husband's estate and keeping his legacy alive.

With her son, Roy Kelton Orbison, she co-produced a four-CD box set of her husband's 107 recordings. Roy Orbison: The Soul Of Rock and Roll was released in 2008 and contains all of his hits and 12 previously unreleased tracks.

The package marked the first all-inclusive body of Roy Orbison's work from his earliest recordings to the Travelling Wilburys' debut album, Mystery Girl and his last live performance. Roy Orbison died in 1988 at 52, in the midst of a comeback with The Travelling Wilburys.

Lisa Swayze, the widow of actor Patrick Swayze, who died in September 2009 of pancreatic cancer, said: "Patrick and I always had a warm connection with them both. Now we have lost this wonderful lady."

In January 2010, Barbara Orbison accepted a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on her husband's behalf.

Barbara Orbison's Nashville, Tennessee-based music publishing company, Still Working Music was recently awarded BMI's 2010 Song of the Year for Taylor Swift's You Belong With Me.

She will be buried next to her husband at Westwood Village Memorial Park in Los Angeles, Ms McMullen said. A Celebration of Life is planned in Nashville.

Mrs Orbison is survived by her sons Wesley Orbison, 46, Roy Kelton Orbison 41 and Alexander Orbison, 36.


From Belfast Telegraph