Celebrity News

Celine Dion’s husband Rene Angelil dies at 73

After a long battle with cancer, Celine Dion’s husband Rene Angelil has passed away at the age of 73 at his home in Las Vegas
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Celine confirmed the news in a statement released today, asking for privacy for the family during their time of grief.

Rene and Celine were married in 1994 and have three children together: Rene-Charles, 14, and five-year-old twins Nelson and Eddy. Rene also has three adult children, Anne-Marie, Patrick and Jean-Pierre, from a previous relationship.

“Rene Angelil, 73, passed away this morning at his home in Las Vegas after a long and courageous battle against cancer,” the statement read.

“The family requests that their privacy be respected at the moment.”

Celine Dion and Rene Angelil

Celine and Rene weathered plenty of ups and downs together during their over 20-year marriage. Photo: Getty

Rene was diagnosed with throat cancer in 1999 and had battled the disease several times over the years. Last year, Celine revealed her husband could no longer eat and had to be fed through a tube.

“He can’t use his mouth. He can’t eat so I feed him,” she said during an interview in March.

“I have to feed him three times a day. I do this myself. So I feed my husband, then I feed my kids.”

Later that year, she said her husband’s dying wish was to be with her when he passed.

“I’ll say, ‘You’re scared? I understand. Talk to me about it’ … And Rene says to me, ‘I want to die in your arms.’ Okay, fine, I’ll be there you’ll die in my arms,” she told USA Today.

Rene, who has acted as Celine’s long-time mentor and manager, met the singer when she was just 12 years old. After she came and sang for him at his office, he signed on to be her manager and was one of her earliest champions, even mortgaging his home to help finance her first record.

They eventually wed in December 1994 when Celine was 26 and Rene was 52. Despite the age difference, Celine knew the music manager was the one for her.

“I’m not surprised that we married each other, because we have the same dreams,” she said in 1995.

“We have the same goals. We respect each other.”

Rene and Celine on their wedding day in 1994.

The couple would go on to enjoy several years of loved-up bliss before Rene received his devastating diagnosis of throat cancer in 1999. Celine retired briefly from the music world to help her husband recover, stepping back from the spotlight for two years as Rene underwent two operations and six weeks of radiation.

In 2000, Rene was declared cancer-free and the couple celebrated by renewing their vows with a lavish ceremony in Las Vegas. Celine made a gradual return to the music industry during this time, taking on a Vegas residency and releasing her first album since her hiatus. However, the couple were hit by more tragedy in 2013.

“I went back in my dressing room and I saw him looking pretty devastated and in shock, and I was like, ‘What’s going on?,” Celine told Good Morning America of the incident.

“He sat down and said, ‘The doctor just called me and I have cancer again.'”

That December, Rene underwent another operation to have a tumour removed from his throat, and Celine stepped back from her career once more to help look after her husband.

“I want to devote every ounce of my strength and energy to my husband’s healing, and to do so, it’s important for me to dedicate this time to him and to our children. I also want to apologize to all my fans everywhere, for inconveniencing them, and I thank them so much for their love and support,” she said in 2014.

Celine, Rene and their children arrive at Caesars Palace in 2011 as Celine began her Las Vegas residency. Photo: Getty

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