Tom Petty’s death and lessons on end-of-life planning

By elderlaw

Tom Petty performed in concert at the Hollywood Bowl Sept. 25, wrapping up the huge Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers 40th Anniversary Tour.  A week later, Petty wrapped up his legendary rock music career. He died in a Los Angeles hospital Oct. 2, just 66 years old.

end-of-life planning

Legendary rock musician Tom Petty performs Sept. 25, 2017 at The Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles — his final concert.

But end-of-life planning plays a part in Petty’s story.

According to published reports, Petty was found in full cardiac arrest at his Malibu, Calif., home the evening of Oct 1. Paramedics were able to get a pulse, and Petty was rushed to the UCLA Santa Monica Hospital and placed on life support. When no signs of brain activity were detected at the hospital, family members reportedly followed his wishes, and a standing Do Not Resuscitate order, and had him removed from life support.

end-of-life planning

The crowd at The Hollywood Bowl stands and cheers for Tom Petty during his final concert, Sept. 25, 2017.

“He died peacefully at 8:40 p.m. PST surrounded by family, his bandmates, and friends,” Tony Dimitriades, longtime manager of Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, posted on behalf of the family on

Petty’s untimely death is a tragedy for the music and entertainment world, but families can take a lesson from the loss.

An excellent article on the topic by Elizabeth Newcome was published today, Oct. 24, on, a project of PBS dedicated to covering issues affecting older adults.

Check out the article at this link:

Tom Petty and Your End-of-Life Wishes
What you and your family can learn from the rock legend’s death


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