Tuesday, August 19, 2008
We're writing today with overwhelming sadness at the loss of our dearest friend, Duane Grimes. He was taken off life support yesterday and passed away at 1:17 a.m. this morning.
We still are in shock with everything that has happened. He had been so healthy and strong (his only hospital stay was this year when he had surgery...not bad for someone a few months shy of 80 years old).
The guys were scheduled to sing in Benton Harbor on Sunday morning. Chuck called Duane, as he always did, to let him know they were on the way. He was in great spirits and told Chuck he'd be ready. We believe, as was his usual way, that he waited a few minutes and then went downstairs to wait. When the bus pulled up, the first thing everyone saw was his suit bag and other stuff laying on the sidewalk. Then we saw him slumped in the doorway. Jeff, being an RN, jumped off the bus to help. He saw that he had no pulse and started CPR. He and Jerry worked over him until the paramedics arrived and were able to get a faint heartbeat. By the time he reached the hospital he had been put on a ventilator. His heart was working but he was unable to breathe on his own. There was extensive damage done to his brain due to lack of oxygen and the family were asked to make the decision last night about whether to keep him on life support or not. The difficult decision was made knowing that Duane would not have wanted to be kept alive if there was no chance of any quality of life or the ability to keep singing for the Lord. Now we know that he is really singing for the Lord.
He just told us during our concert at the Pix on Aug. 9th that this month was his 50th anniversary of singing gospel music.
Please keep the Grimes family, Duane's extended Royalheirs family and all who loved him in your prayers. We will post the funeral arrangements as soon as they are available.
The ROYALHEIRS hail from Flint, Michigan and organized in the fall of 1995 for the primary purpose of praising the Lord through the singing of " Southern Gospel Music". Their music has a quality that puts the emphasis on ministering through music. Music that blends harmony with soul stirring words that are a welcome change of pace from other forms of music. Just as their name implies, each ROYALHEIR is an Heir to Godly Royalty. Each member has a glowing testimony that will radiate during their musical presentation. Each member has an extensive background in Gospel Music. Each has committed themselves to sharing their talents in this unique way and have been instrumental in uplifting and blessing many people in their concerts throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Wisconsin and wherever the Lord leads.