British pop star George Michael, the musician who first shot to fame with the 1980s duo Wham!, has died, his family said in a statement. He was 53 years old.
“It is with great sadness that we can confirm our beloved son, brother and friend George passed away peacefully at home over the Christmas period,” said the statement which was released by Britain’s Thames Valley Police.
Wham! scored big with hits such as “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” and “Careless Whisper.”
Michael went on to a successful solo career; his 1987 debut album “Faith” sold more than 10 million copies. Many of his hits with Wham! and as a solo artist, are still well-known decades later.
In a statement, Thames Valley Police said: “At this stage the death is being treated as unexplained but not suspicious.”
The agency said police were called to a property in Goring-on-Thames shortly before 2 p.m. on Sunday and confirmed the death of a 53-year-old man at the scene.
Condolences poured in on social media.
Andrew Ridgeley, the other half of Wham!, expressed his grief on Twitter, saying he was “heartbroken.”
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