Everett "Vic" Firth, founder of leading drumstick manufacturing company Vic Firth Company, has died. He was 85.
A statement on the Vic Firth Facebook page reads: "To our dear friends around the world: We are heartbroken to share the news with you that Vic has passed away.
"Vic was an inspiration to all of us. He was a visionary, a mentor, a leader and a friend. He always said he surrounded himself with the best people, but the truth is he brought out the best in all of us. His boundless passion for music and musicians drove every decision he made.
"Vic's spirit and legacy will continue to live at the core of the Vic Firth Company. He will be missed beyond words."
Firth founded his company in 1963 after performing with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and deciding that sticks were being overlooked.
"It was not only the quality of drumsticks, it was the lack of variety of drumsticks that were being offered," he said in an interview.
"A drumstick has a configuration that gives it a response on the cymbals and on the drums.
"Its shape has an effect on the quality of the sound and even slight variations in the manufacturing process can greatly influence the result."
Among those who have endorsed Firth's products over the years are HELLYEAH's Vinnie Paul Abbott, RAMMSTEIN's Christoph Schneider, ANIMALS AS LEADERS' Matt Garstka, QUEEN's Roger Taylor and VANILLA FUDGE's Carmine Appice.