MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson's mother died on Thursday, July 21 after battling health issues for much of the last decade.
The musician wrote on his Facebook page: "It is with a heavy heart that I inform my dear sweet mother, Frances Marie Ellefson, has gone home to see the Lord. She passed tonight at approximately 6 p.m. here in Jackson, Minnesota at The Good Samaritan nursing home, where she has resided the past ten years following a massive stroke. She was also a nurse here for 20 years after I left to Hollywood, California in 1983.
"I'm thankful that I was able to be here at her side in such short notice with all the other setbacks this week. Somehow God makes a way when there seems no other way.
"You raised me well, mom, and gave everything you had to serving others. You fought the good fight, you have finished the race. Go home and rest in eternal peace now. I love you mom, and thank you for this life you gave to me."
In his autobiography, "My Life With Deth", Ellefson credited his mother for inspiring him to stay focused on MEGA Life!, the Arizona-based ministry he launched to help those new to Christianity or those seeking a new church home a dynamic center for developing faith. He wrote: "I started the MEGA Life! group, holding auditions for musicians. On the first day of auditions, [my wife] Julie and my kids came rushing into the church and told me that my mother had suffered a severe stroke back in Minnesota. She was only seventy-two years old. She had survived it, but she was at the hospital back in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. I immediately booked a flight and flew up to see her.
"My mother had been somewhat of a shining star in VH1's 'Behind The Music' special on MEGADETH for her sweet candor. When she had her stroke, a friend put the word out to the metal community, and we were showered with prayers and thoughtful words to her from the fans. It was truly a touching moment. Within a week, she'd taken up residence in the same nursing home where she had worked for the twenty years since I'd left home, back in Jackson, Minnesota.
"My pastor told me when I came back to Arizona that when the Lord decides to do something like the MEGA Life! project, Satan tries his hardest to distract leaders away from him. Not that my mother's stroke was an act of Satan, but rather that it could be a distraction for me to not pursue the worship service. That was the first time I really connected the personal issues of spiritual warfare that I mentioned earlier."
MEGADETH canceled the remaining two shows on its European tour last week after Ellefson fractured his foot before a scheduled concert in Hungary.
In addition to Ellefson, MEGADETH's current lineup includes guitarist/vocalist Dave Mustaine, Brazilian guitarist Kiko Loureiro, best known for his work with ANGRA, and former SOILWORK drummer Dirk Verbeuren.