Wolf Van Halen Says He 'Got Three More Years' with Dad Eddie Thanks to Cancer Treatment in Germany11/16/2020
As Wolf Van Halen continues to mourn the death of his father Eddie, he's "thankful" for the cancer treatment that kept Eddie around longer.
In a wide-ranging interview with Howard Stern on his SiriusXM show Monday, Wolf, 29, opened up about his father's life and the reunion that was in the works after his dad started to recover from lung cancer.
"At the end of 2017, he was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer and the doctors were like, 'You have six weeks,'" Wolf told Stern. "And then he went to Germany. Whatever the f— they do over there, it's amazing because I got three more years with him."
"When things looked good, I would start teasing my music was like, okay, it's ready to go and then things would sink again and I'd be like, I'm not gonna do anything," he adds.
Eddie — who founded and fronted Van Halen — died last month at age 65 after facing cancer for years. His son was by his side through it all.
"I was with him every step of the way," he said. "Every second."
Wolf even said he put his solo music career on hold to be by his father's side.
"I was rehearsing at the end of 2018 but things happen and it's like, 'Do I want to go out on tour for an 18-month cycle or do I want to be with my dad?' and I think I made the right choice," he said. "People have no f—ing idea what anyone is going through at any time. And people giving me s—, because it's taken so long to put my album. If you had any idea, you guys would feel like s—."
In the interview, Wolf also clarified the cause of his dad's death, saying that it had been "misattributed" by some outlets as throat cancer. That falsehood led some to correlate Eddie's death with his previous tongue cancer in the early 2000s, which Eddie blamed on holding a metal pick in his mouth.
Wolf said it was "certainly feasible" that he got tongue cancer from the pick but the idea he had throat cancer from it and died from that is simply wrong.
"People love to give him s— about that," he said, before adding "He would hold that pick in the same spot all the time, and that's the exact area that he got the squamous cell carcinoma in his tongue that he had to get cut out."
"When it's reported, it's always attributed to the throat cancer and then everybody instead of going 'Oh s—. His cancer's back.' People are just going 'What an idiot. He thinks he got throat cancer from a pick?' And it just totally derails the whole thing," he added.
Wolf also said that the band was in talks of doing a "giant f—ing awesome" reunion, jokingly titled "The Kitchen Sink Tour" where Wolf would open the show for Van Halen, featuring Sam Hagar, David Lee Roth and even Gary Cherone.
"But by that time, Dad wasn't able to," he said. "Things started getting really bad at the beginning of 2019, he got in a motorcycle accident and he had a brain tumor. We took care of it, he got this crazy procedure and he was okay. But as time went on, s— kept stacking up and stacking up. It just never let up."
Through all of his health issues, Wolf stayed by his side. And although Eddie and Wolf's mother Valerie Bertinelli split in 2001 after being married for 20 years, Wolf said they remained good friends to the end.
"They found that they were with each other for a reason," he said. "And they still remained really good friends because I think their main bonding point was that they made me. They were very proud and happy with how I am."
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