Guitarist Damon Johnson (pictured below; THIN LIZZY, ALICE COOPER, BROTHER CANE) has released the following statement regarding the passing of former DEEP PURPLE/WHITESNAKE keyboardist Jon Lord:"Love and respect to the legendary Jon Lord. Condolences to his family. His mark in contemporary music is long and permanent. R.I.P." Jon Lord died earlier today (Monday, July 16) in a U.K. hospital at the age of 71. He suffered a fatal pulmonary embolism at the London Clinic after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. Jon was "surrounded by his loving family," a message on his official web site said. In addition to DEEP PURPLE, Lord played in WHITESNAKE — the band led by ex-PURPLE singer David Coverdale — from 1978 to 1984, having appeared on the albums "Trouble", "Lovehunter", "Ready An' Willing", "Come An' Get It", "Saints & Sinners" and "Slide It In". Jon Lord is survived by his wife Vickie and two daughters — Amy and Sara.