Adam Yauch of the Beastie Boys passed away today at the age of forty-seven after a three year battle with cancer. Yauch, a.k.a. MCA, was one the founding members of the seminal hip-hop trio and was diagnosed with cancer in 2009 after doctors discovered a tumor in his salivary gland.
Last month he was forced to sit out the Beastie Boys' Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction due to complications with his illness. At the ceremony, bandmates Michael Diamond and Adam Horovitz (a.k.a. Mike D and Ad-Rock) read a statement from Yauch saying, "I'd like to dedicate this to my brothers Adam and Mike. They walked the globe with me. It's also for anyone who has every been touched by our band. This induction is as much ours as it is yours."
Yauch, who is survived by his wife and daughter, also launched his own film production company (which released the Banksy documentary Exit Through the Gift Shop), and he directed several of the group's videos over the course of his career.
RIP Adam. You will be sorely missed.