Eddie Van Halen is dead at age 65. The guitarist and songwriter’s son Wolfgang Van Halen announced his death on Tuesday afternoon.

“I can't believe I'm having to write this,” the statement said. “But my father, Edward Lodewijk Van Halen, has lost his long and arduous battle with cancer this morning.

"He was the best father I could ever ask for. Every moment I've shared with him on and off stage was a gift.”

Eddie Van Halen, leader of the eponymous band, died Tuesday at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, California, TMZ reports. Sources told the outlet he died with his wife Janie, son Wolfgang, and brother/bandmate Alex by his side.

Eddie Van Halen's cause of death is said to be throat cancer. Doctors recently discovered that the cancer spread to his brain and other organs. The singer apparently took a turn for the worse over the last three days, which is why he was surrounded by family when he passed.

Van Halen had quite a few rotating members, but Eddie and Alex (the drummer) remained with the band for nearly 50 years. In recent years, Wolf had started touring as their bassist.

Van Halen released 12 albums over nearly five decades, selling millions of records. The band was known for hits including "Jump" and "Hot for Teacher," and Eddie appeared with a guitar solo on Michael Jackson's "Beat It." Van Halen was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.

Eddie Van Halen dead
Guitarist Eddie Van Halen of the rock band Van Halen died at age 65. He is pictured performing on Sept. 30, 2015 in Chula Vista, California. Daniel Knighton/Getty Images