Richie Faulkner said he got permission from his doctors to tour with Judas Priest while he waits for a second open-heart surgery and noted that the band only canceled one gig while they were on vacation. took care of his health problems.
The guitarist required emergency surgery last year after collapsing with a ruptured aorta during the band’s performance at the Louder Than Life festival in Kentucky in 2021. Recalling the incident in an article on social networks, he explained that he had gone under the knife again six weeks ago.
“It’s crazy how one minute you’re listening to the crowd singing ‘War Pigs’ – everything’s normal, everything seems fine – the next it turns out was almost the last time I heard it,” said Faulkner said of his meltdown. “I’m lucky and grateful to be here a year later to write this. My support system at home, in hospitals and of course from all metal maniacs has been second to none and I thank you all .
But, he continued, “I’m not completely out of the woods yet. Just before our European tour, scans showed a hole in one of the connections between the synthetic graft and my own aorta that was causing a leak. The blood from the leak formed an 8cm bag that surrounded my heart.
The road trip began in May and ended in Belgium on August 7, and Faulkner confirmed that his “doctors were okay” with his participation. “But as soon as I got back I had to drop again for another open heart operation. So three days after we played Belgium they came in, removed the bag and fixed the leak.
He said he felt “good and strong” and was looking forward to Priest’s upcoming North American dates. “My surgeons were always convinced that I had enough time to recover and get back on the road,” he added. “And it seems they were right. We had to lose Aftershock Festival [in California in October] for me to recover, but it looks like it’s still going to be an awesome festival.
He advised: “Take care of yourselves and your loved ones; you never know what’s around the corner. Stay safe and see you soon.
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