SINGER songwriter and artist Daniel Johnston has died at the age of 58.
The cult figure passed away at his home in Austin, Texas yesterday morning from a heart attack following years of ill health, his family revealed.
Johnston’s offbeat sensibilities and career earned him a dedicated following and inspired an Oscar nominated documentary The Devil and Daniel Johnston in 2005.
He struggled with mental illness throughout his life, The Austin Chronicle reports.
Johnston was born in Sacramento, California, in 1961, and grew up in West Virginia but only became known as a songwriter after moving to Austin, Texas in the 1980s.
His songs, which included Life In Vain and True Love Will Find You In The End, earned him famous fans like Kurt Cobain, The Simpsons creator Matt Groening and The Flaming Lips.
Cobain was photographed a number of times wearing a t-shirt featuring the cover image of Johnston’s 1983 album Hi, How Are You.
In the early 1990s, Johnston, suffered a manic psychotic episode during a plane flight, when he believed he was the cartoon character Casper the Friendly Ghost.
The singer threw the keys for the plane out of its window, which left him with minor injuries following the crash.
He was later diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Johnston also suffered from diabetes, kidney infections and hydrocephalus.
According to a statement issued by his family, Johnston passed away from a heart attack on Tuesday, September 10, at home.
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His family said in a statement: “Daniel was a singer, songwriter, an artist, and a friend to all.
“Although he struggled with mental health issues for much of his adult life, Daniel triumphed over his illness through his prolific output of art and songs.
“He inspired countless fans, artists, and songwriters with his message that no matter how dark the day that ‘the sun shines down on me’ and ‘true love will find you in the end’.”
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