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  1. #1
    Eruption lal5150's Avatar
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    dont ask i love em all
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    ARE U KIDDING ME
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    06.16.12 @ 03:16 PM
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    Default gregg emerson passing away

    In the year-end issue of Rolling Stone Magazine there was an article titled “The Worst Year Ever.” Just like every magazine and news oriented TV show, Rolling Stone was looking back at the year that was and summing it up the best they could. In their opinion “no year has ever sucked like this one.”

    Over and above all of the natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, and the polar ice caps melting, they also humorously listed all of the “fools, criminals, losers, low-lifes, and all-around idiots” that made 2005 a year worthy of forgetting. All of the whack jobs that polluted the airwaves during the year were listed. Tom Cruise and Oprah’s couch, Wacko Jacko, Dubya, Britney and Kevin, Tom Delay, Scooter Libby, Jennifer Wilbanks, and assorted Rap stars doing bad/stupid things.

    Even though I had moments in my year that I did consider highlights, I have to agree with their assessment of the year as a whole and will be glad to begin a new year in hopes of a better one. During this year I was dealt a couple of blows that I have yet to shake and to be honest I doubt that I ever will. Both coming from the same insidious beast, suicide.

    The first came early in the year with the death of my favorite writer, Dr. Hunter S. Thompson. In February at his compound in Woody Creek, Colorado, the Doctor took his own life at the age of 67. A long time gun aficionado, his method of departure was not surprising. He had made mention many times that he was going to be the one to choose his time and place of death. So when I heard the news of his passing, while greatly saddened, I wasn’t surprised.

    Even though I had never met the good Doctor I, like many, felt that I knew him through his writings and the thought of not having him around kept popping into my head. Not since John Lennon had I felt so deeply affected by the death of someone that I didn’t personally know. So the Doctor’s passing was enough to make 2005 one of my least favorite years.

    But then on Thanksgiving Day came the cincher. The event that officially made this year suck beyond belief, the news that my friend Gregg Emerson had died. The call came just minutes before we were to sit down for a big family dinner and it struck me like a lighting bolt.

    I had known Gregg, or Big G as everyone who knew him called him, for over 25 years. We first met because of business. He was the drum technician for Van Halen and I designed cases for musical instruments that bands took on the road when they toured. Big G and his brothers had grown up in Pasadena and were childhood friends with the Van Halens and Gregg and Alex were best friends.

    As time passed, Big G became Alex’s drum tech and spent years on tour with him. He traveled the world with the band and when we would get together for a game of darts or a late night work session in the basement of David Lee Roth’s dad’s mansion where the band rehearsed in the early days, he would always share hilarious stories about his adventures on the road.

    From our first meeting we developed a bond that was never broken, even when we didn’t see each other for extended periods of time. Even when he was on the road for months at a time, when we got together again, it was as though we had just seen one another the day before.

    This was an aspect of Big G’s personality that extended way beyond just me. He had the ability to make everyone feel like he was their best friend. Ever the gracious host, you could stop by his house anytime and feel welcome. This became easier to do after Big G left the band shortly after Roth left and Sammy Hager joined the group in 1985.

    After leaving the band he started his own business and had two great kids, Carissa and Drake, who were close in age to my kids. So when the kids were young our families would get together often and we all grew closer. This eventually led to a weekly round of golf at Arcadia 3 Par with Big G, my friend Tom, and myself. We played religiously for years until the inevitable happened.

    That would be that our kids got involved in sports. Soccer, hockey, softball, and baseball soon won out over golf and the needs of the many outweighed the needs of the few. Our families slowly started to grow apart due in part to the fact that we live here in Temple City and they lived in Glendora. It became a running joke to write in each other’s Christmas cards “Let’s get together soon” even though we knew it wouldn’t happen because of conflicting schedules.

    Even though Big G and I didn’t get together for golf any more we would still call one another just to stay in touch, threaten to play a round of golf, and talk about our kids. The one thing that he wouldn’t talk about was anything negative, which is why the call on Thanksgiving Day was such a shock to my system. Because in my mind if there was anyone in my life that wouldn’t take his own life it was Big G.

    It wasn’t until I spoke to his brother Allen a couple of weeks later that things became clearer. Apparently Big G had been battling depression that was brought on by problems in his marriage. Something that the always tight-lipped G didn’t mention in our last phone conversation a month and a half prior.

    Having suffered from bouts of depression over the years I understand the kind of pain, helplessness, and darkness he must have been going through. It is a tough disease that can rear its ugly head at anytime, sometimes without provocation. Despite what lunatics like Tom Cruise may say, it can be managed through drugs and therapy.

    Big G and the Doctor shared a couple of other things other than their choice of departure. They both appeared in the pages of Rolling Stone, the Doctor was a long time columnist, and Big G was mentioned during a review of the Van Halen II album in 1979. Both were cremated and are having their ashes spread over areas that they loved. Big G is to be at Newport Beach where he spent many happy summers and the Doctor had his ashes shot out of a 153-foot tall cannon above his Woody Creek compound.

    I will miss them both till the day I die and thank them for the impact they had on my life.

    The following is a poem that was passed out Big G’s Memorial Service:

    Though I chose death instead of pointless pain,
    Please forgive the manner of my leaving.
    My love and need for all of you remain.

    I could not long such suffering sustain,
    Nor would it long have held you from your grieving.
    Though I chose death instead of pointless pain.

    I hope that choice will not my memory stain,
    Nor lead you to be wroth at my deceiving.
    My love and need for all of you remain.

    For only in you do I live again,
    Woven like a wind into your weaving.
    Though I chose death instead of pointless pain.

    I put to you the plea of the self-slain:
    To comprehend an anguish past conceiving.
    My love and need for all of you remain.

    That all that I have been not be in vain,
    But blend into earth of your believing.
    Though I chose death instead of pointless pain,
    My love and need for all of you remain.
    Last edited by lal5150; 03.04.06 at 10:45 AM.

  2. #2
    Pope Of Greenwich Village SuckaInA3Piece's Avatar
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    08.28.17 @ 03:27 PM
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    That really is a shame.

    RIP Greg.
    "It's always a Catch-22 situation. They hate you if you're the same, and they hate you if you're different."
    ~Eddie Van Halen~

    "The perfect woman has an IQ of 150, wants to make love until 4 in the morning, and then turns into a pizza."
    ~David Lee Roth~

    Sucka'sFacebook

  3. #3
    Hang 'Em High MAX's Avatar
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    06.03.10 @ 11:18 AM
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    I'm very sorry to hear about such a loss within The Van Halen family and more importantly, to you for losing your friend.

    My deepest sympathies.

    God Bless
    Last edited by MAX; 03.04.06 at 11:00 AM.
    EAT US AND SMILE!!!!

    "Please don't take my teddy bear... Please!!!" - diamondsgirl's Oscar nominated dramatic scene for best actress of 2007

    "and by Van Halen, I mean David Lee Roth" - diamondsgirl on Van Halen

  4. #4
    Atomic Punk smithjc's Avatar
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    08.04.17 @ 11:33 PM
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    That is so sad.

    RIP.
    RIP - Classic Van Halen

    "A lot of people take Van Halen more seriously than we do." The Diamond One



  5. #5
    Atomic Punk stilleddiesangel's Avatar
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    Have a soft spot for F*U*C*K
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    08.25.17 @ 05:45 PM
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    I'm so saddened by this. For Gregg, his friends and family. My sympathies.
    ****Texas - Home Of My Heart****

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  6. #6
    Hang 'Em High
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    12.10.17 @ 08:06 AM
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    Default

    R.I.P. Gregg. It was great to see some of his involvement shown on the Van Halen Story DVD. It's a damn shame, seems he was a great guy and true friend to all.

  7. #7
    Forum Frontman Double Down's Avatar
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    11.17.17 @ 12:11 PM
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    Default

    Thanks for sharing one of the most interesting stories I've read here. Sorry about your loss.
    .
    .
    .
    VH with Dave ('78-'84) - The best years....the "real" VH.
    VH with Sam ('86-'96) - Incredible era....."We have renamed this town 'New Halen!'.
    VH with Gary ('98) - Fucking disaster. WTF was that??
    VH with Wolf/Dave ('12-'15) - Amazing comeback. Smokin' album and tours.

  8. #8
    Sinner's Swing!
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    12.12.16 @ 10:22 AM
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    My condolences to Gregg's family and friends.

  9. #9
    5150 LOC's Avatar
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    11.28.17 @ 06:43 PM
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    was he one of the guys in that recent pic of Al someone posted a couple of weeks ago?

  10. #10
    Hang 'Em High MAX's Avatar
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    06.03.10 @ 11:18 AM
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    This might sound bitter but I think this thread deserves a friggin' "Sticky" and am completely blown away that hardly anyone has paid any attention to this?
    EAT US AND SMILE!!!!

    "Please don't take my teddy bear... Please!!!" - diamondsgirl's Oscar nominated dramatic scene for best actress of 2007

    "and by Van Halen, I mean David Lee Roth" - diamondsgirl on Van Halen

  11. #11
    Atomic Punk stilleddiesangel's Avatar
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    08.25.17 @ 05:45 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ou812max
    This might sound bitter but I think this thread deserves a friggin' "Sticky" and am completely blown away that hardly anyone has paid any attention to this?
    I agree Max. Gregg was a big part of the VH family at the start and deserves a little better.
    ****Texas - Home Of My Heart****

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  12. #12
    Hang 'Em High perticelli's Avatar
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    11.30.15 @ 02:22 PM
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    Is this from lal5150 or is he quoting rolling stone?
    Eddie is the greatest, period

    The Unofficial VHLinks RRHOF

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  13. #13
    Hang 'Em High MAX's Avatar
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    06.03.10 @ 11:18 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by stilleddiesangel
    I agree Max. Gregg was a big part of the VH family at the start and deserves a little better.
    Thanks SEA,

    I'm seriously just boggled as to why people here aren't sayin' anything?

    Hope all's well with you? Haven't seen you in a while.
    EAT US AND SMILE!!!!

    "Please don't take my teddy bear... Please!!!" - diamondsgirl's Oscar nominated dramatic scene for best actress of 2007

    "and by Van Halen, I mean David Lee Roth" - diamondsgirl on Van Halen

  14. #14
    Baluchitherium Rovus's Avatar
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    07.09.11 @ 09:31 PM
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    R.I.P Greg

    This guy was there before the beginning...from the time when Ed and Al switched instruments.
    Bobby Cohn: Who's going to be at Waynestock?
    Wayne Campbell: Um, uh...Aerosmith & Pearl Jam!
    Garth Algar: Ha ha ha ha ho!
    Bobby: Who else?
    Garth: Uh, me...and...and Wayne...
    Wayne: ...and uh...VAN HALEN!!!
    Garth: Wow. Van Halen. Who else?
    Bobby: Yeah, who else?
    Wayne: Uh, an old man fashioning a kayak out of a log?

    - Wayne's World 2

    "God gave men both a penis and a brain, but unfortunately not enough blood supply to run both at the same time." - Robin Williams

    "Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential." - Winston Churchill

  15. #15
    Atomic Punk FORD's Avatar
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    10.22.17 @ 08:55 PM
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    I don't know Gregg Emerson from Adam. But I know the dark road he walked all too well. And nothing sucks worse than that.

    RIP Gregg. And peace to his family
    Eat Us And Smile

    Welcome back, Van HALEN!!!!

    ...It's the BAND and Dave is really the cat that can front VH. He sang his ASS off and was really cool. No cheese here guys, this is filet Mignon! - Steve Lukather's comment after witnessing a Van HALEN 2007 rehearsal

    "What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears?"- 1 Samuel 15:14

 

 

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