A representative for the musician, whose real name was Marvin Lee Aday, confirmed on Facebook Friday that he died surrounded by his wife and daughters, Pearl and Amanda, along with close friends. Speaking exclusively to People just days after losing her husband, Deborah described the grief she’s experiencing after seeing her husband take “his last breath.”
“The grief I feel over the loss of my husband is gut-wrenching,” she told the outlet. “I was lying close to Michael when he took his last breath and my sadness is beyond words. I’ve always called him by his given name because I didn’t see him as ‘Meat.’ I feel much gratitude for the outpouring of love I have received from around the world.”
She added: “He meant so much to so many people, and it gave me joy to be able to share him with the world. As his wife, I also want everyone to know how much he meant to me as a husband.”
Aday and Meat Loaf tied the knot in 2007 and were together in marriage for about 15 years before he died. While discussing the nature of their relationship, she notes that he was a “hugger” who always made sure to tell her how much he loved her every single day.
“I waited until later in life to get married because I was waiting for the right man,” she explained. “And oh boy, was he ever the right man for me! I realize how blessed I am to have shared my life with such an incredible person. He didn’t hesitate to let me know how much I was appreciated, and often sweetly told me, ‘You’re a good wife.’ I will miss hearing that.”
She concluded her lengthy statement to the outlet by noting that their life together was “an adventure” and described the immense pain she feels right now over his death. However, she also made sure to note that her heart is also full of “love and glory” over what they shared while he was around.
In a separate statement to the outlet, Meat Loaf’s daughter, Amanda, 41, explained that her father was a “complex man with a lot of passion.” She also explained that, although he was a rock icon on stage, once he got home he was every bit the responsible father one would expect.
“If we didn’t get good grades, we were grounded, and all of that stuff,” she explained. “So, it was very much, when we weren’t out on tour living this crazy life, it was very important to him that we were grounded in our home.”
He also taught his girls never to be “hip” despite his ability to buy them all the nicest things.
“Pearl and I would want a new pair of shoes or something, whatever was in trend, fashion-wise or whatever, and he’d always say, ‘Don’t be trendy. Don’t be hip. Be cool, because cool is always.’ And that was him,” she explained.
That’s why Amanda says he hated the term “rock star.”
“That’s how he performed,” she says. “And that’s why his performances, his live performances, were unlike anything else, because in his mind, in his heart and his soul every night, he was giving you a Broadway performance. He wasn’t just coming out and singing songs from an album … It was a show.”