Singer Meat Loaf has passed away at 74 years old.
The “Rocky Horror Picture Show” actor’s cause of death has not been made public at this time. His family issued a statement regarding his passing, saying that he passed away surrounded by his wife, Deborah, his two daughters, and close friends.
One of his daughters, Amanda Aday, spoke exclusively to People to say what she would miss most about her late father.
Amanda Aday: When Meat Loaf Was Home ‘He Was Just Dad’
Aday called her late father a “complex man with a lot of passion, who wore his heart on his sleeve.”
Although she admitted to having a lot of fun experiences growing up on tour buses, when he was home, “he was just dad,” she said. “He wasn’t Meat Loaf anymore.”
When he wasn’t on tour, Aday says her father was a typical dad who was involved in his children’s lives, like directing school plays and coaching their softball teams.
“If we didn’t get good grades, we were grounded, and all of that stuff,” she said. “So, it was very much, when we weren’t out on tour living this crazy life, it was very important to him that we were grounded in our home.”
Although she and her sister, Pearl, always wanted to fit in, it was her father who encouraged her to stand out.
“Growing up, when we were little, he always said he never wanted to be hip,” Aday recalled. “Pearl and I would want a new pair of shoes or something, whatever was in trend, fashion-wise or whatever, and he’d always say, ‘Don’t be trendy. Don’t be hip. Be cool, because cool is always.’ And that was him.”
Meat Loaf Was A Big Fan Of The Christmas Season
According to Aday, her father loved Christmas so much she called him Santa Claus. “He would stay up all night making train sets around the Christmas tree,” she shared.
When she was six years old, Aday said that her father got her every Playmobil toy on the market. “He stayed up literally all night and erected an entire Playmobil city and circus underneath the Christmas tree, because that’s what he did,” she said. “He was dad.”
Aday was born in 1981, when Meaf Loaf released his second album, “Dead Ringer.” She began touring the world with him as an infant. Some of her earliest memories of her father were of him “working really hard.”
In 1993, Aday was 13, and Meat Loaf had released his sixth studio album. The album, “Bat Out Of H— II: back Into H—” and his single “Anything For Love” had hit number one on the charts.
“I remember we were in the hotel room and my mom just started sobbing crying, and my dad started crying,” she recalled. “And I’m standing there going, ‘What? What is this? What are you guys doing?’ And then, from there, he was everywhere again.”
Despite his sudden surge in popularity, Meat Loaf did not want to call it a comeback.
“I didn’t go anywhere,” her father reportedly said at the time. “I’ve never stopped playing. I’ve never stopped performing. I’ve always been here. You guys are just now recognizing that.”
Meat Loaf Never Wanted To Be Called A ‘Rock Star’
According to Aday, Meat Loaf wasn’t fond of the term “rock star.”
“He would want me to say, ‘I’m not a rock star,’” Aday recalled. “‘I’m not a legend. I’m a singer, I’m an actor, I’m a lot of things, but I’m not those two words.’”
“That’s how he performed,” she added. “And that’s why his performances, his live performances, were unlike anything else, because in his mind, in his heart and his soul every night, he was giving you a Broadway performance. He wasn’t just coming out and singing songs from an album … It was a show.”
Adam is hoping that her father will be remembered for his life both on and off stage.
“He was a singer, he was an actor, he was a father, a husband, he was a grandpa,” she said. “It was Papa Meat to my nephew. He was everything.”
Meat Loaf’s Health Was Declining ‘Very Rapidly, More Rapidly Than Expected’
Aday said that both she and her sister rushed to Nashville after they got a call that said Meat Loaf’s health was “declining very rapidly, more rapidly than expected.
She said that she and her sister were “very thankful” to see their father again before he passed. “As soon as we could, we just went to his bedside at the hospital and just sat with him and held his hand,” she said.
Just before he passed, friends and family members gathered around Meat Loaf for one last time.
Aday said that each person got a chance to share “sweet and funny” with the late singer. “He flipped a couple of us off, which is very dad, very appropriate,” she joked. “That’s a good sign. He’s there. He’s joking.”
There are plans for a memorial service and a funeral. “We certainly hope that there will be one,” she said. “We plan to send a lot of invitations out to people that dad loved and respected and that we hope will want to be a part of that.”