Jon Oliva (mastermind of SAVATAGE and JON OLIVA'S PAIN, co-creator/songwriter of the TRANS-SIBERIAN ORCHESTRA) has released the following statement regarding the passing of legendary heavy metal singer Ronnie James Dio (DIO, HEAVEN & HELL, BLACK SABBATH, RAINBOW):
"Two days have passed and I still cannot come to grips with the tragic passing of Ronnie James Dio.
"My heart is sad once again.
"I have always considered Ronnie as a God, a hero, a pioneer, a legend, and one of the nicest people I have ever met.
"Ronnie gave SAVATAGE their first break when he took us on tour so many years ago. We were so young and did so many stupid things on that tour. But Ronnie let it all go, and took care of us.
"The world has lost more than an icon...we lost so much more than that this past Sunday.
"I can't properly express my sadness.
"Thank you, Ronnie, and for all you have given us as a musician, but most of all for your sweet and caring soul. You will be missed, and we will celebrate your life forever."