Legendary Eddie Van Halen will always be known for his kindness.
Dimebag Darrell’s final words before being assailed and succumbing to the gunshot wounds were “Van Halen”.
Here’s what Vinnie Paul had said:
“The last thing that really matters to me is the last thing we said to each other before we went on stage. We were warming up on the side of the stage like we always did and we were both really excited… Our code word to let it all hang out and have a good time was ‘Van Halen,’ man! And that’s the last two words we ever said to each other. I said, ‘Van Halen’ and he said ‘Van Halen,’ and we high-fived each other and went on the deck to do our thing… and a minute-and-a-half later I’ll never see him again.”
Dimebag was said to have listened to Van Halen before every show, saying:
“He plays ‘Eruption’ and you go, “Sh*t, I never heard a guitar sound like that in my life.’ He was to our generation what Hendrix was to his.”
During the funeral on December 14th, EVH arrived with a guitar, which surprisingly wasn’t a production model, but the original one.
He told Dimebag’s girlfriend Rita Haney that “An original should have an original.” saying:
“I can’t go in there… I want to remember him like he was that night I met him.”
So Haney took the instrument herself and held it as if to have Dimebag take a look at it. She then said, “See, baby? You didn’t get a replica – you got the one!” then proceeded to kiss his forehead as she placed the guitar on his casket.