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By Stan Greene
Observer Staff Writer 

LA County Coroner Releases Report on Death of Singer Tom Petty

Accidental drug overdose include Fentanyl and Oxycodone, caused his heart to stop


January 19, 2018

Tom Petty married his second wife Dana in 2001, ten years after meeting her at a concert.

The Los Angeles County Coroner Friday afternoon released the toxicology report on the death of Tom Petty. It says the singer died from "Multisystem organ failure due to resuscitated cardiopulmonary arrest due to mixed drug toxicity (fentanyl, oxycodone, temazepam, alprazolam, citalopram, acetylfentanyl, and despropionyl fentanyl)"

Petty was found in his Malibu home, dead at age 66 of heart failure on October 3, 2017. The Singer was acclaimed for balads such as "I Won't Back Down," "American Girl," and "Free Falling." He was buried in a private ceremony with just his family.

The Coroner's press release is below. We follow it with a joint statement from Tom Petty's wife and daughter.

Coroner Case Number 2017-07259 – PETTY, Thomas

The Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner conducted an examination on the body of Thomas Earl Petty, age 66, on October 3rd, 2017.

The findings of the examination have established the cause of death to be as follows:

Cause of death: Multisystem organ failure due to resuscitated cardiopulmonary arrest due to mixed drug toxicity (fentanyl, oxycodone, temazepam, alprazolam, citalopram, acetylfentanyl, and despropionyl fentanyl)

Other conditions: Coronary artery atherosclerosis, emphysema

How injury occurred: Mixed drug intoxication

The manner of death has been determined to be: Accident

Statement from Tom Petty's Wife, Dana and his daughter, Adria:

Our family sat together this morning with the medical examiner – coroner's office and we were informed of their final analysis that Tom Petty passed away due to an accidental drug overdose as a result of taking a variety of medications.

Unfortunately Tom's body suffered from many serious ailments including emphysema, knee problems and most significantly a fractured hip.

Despite this painful injury he insisted on keeping his commitment to his fans and he toured for 53 dates with a fractured hip and, as he did, it worsened to a more serious injury.

On the day he died he was informed his hip had graduated to a full on break and it is our feeling that the pain was simply unbearable and was the cause for his over use of medication.

We knew before the report was shared with us that he was prescribed various pain medications for a multitude of issues including fentanyl patches and we feel confident that this was, as the coroner found, an unfortunate accident.

As a family we recognize this report may spark a further discussion on the opioid crisis and we feel that it is a healthy and necessary discussion and we hope in some way this report can save lives. Many people who overdose begin with a legitimate injury or simply do not understand the potency and deadly nature of these medications.

On a positive note we now know for certain he went painlessly and beautifully exhausted after doing what he loved the most, for one last time, performing live with his unmatchable rock band for his loyal fans on the biggest tour of his 40 plus year career. He was extremely proud of that achievement in the days before he passed.

We continue to mourn with you and marvel at Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers incredible positive impact on music and the world. And we thank you all for your love and support over the last months.

Thank you also for respecting the memory of a man who was truly great during his time on this planet both publicly and privately.

We would be grateful if you could respect the privacy of the entire Heartbreaker family during this difficult time.

Dana Petty and Adria Petty


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