Two years ago when Chuck Schuldiner (of Control Denied and seminal band Death) received treatment for a brain tumor, it was believed he was on the road to recovery. Unfortunately, the heavy-metal community was shocked last week when it learned his condition had suddenly worsened. However, an experimental medical treatment, not covered by health insurance, may improve his condition so he can be operated on. Physicians have told Schuldiner they will not begin treating him until they receive a hefty cash deposit.
According to Maria Abril, President of Hammerheart America (the U.S. office of Schuldiner’s current record label), “The treatments and mandatory scans Chuck needs before he can be operated on will total at least $25,000 a month. Since he was first diagnosed, the Schuldiner family has spent more than $200,000 on Chuck’s care.”
It was almost 15 years ago that then-teenage guitarist-vocalist-writer Schuldiner pioneered a new direction in heavy metal with the legendary band Death, one of the first groups to create music that was both melodic and brutally heavy. Death’s music has not only provided musical inspiration for countless bands over the years; it has helped many fans through frustrating and tough times thanks to Schuldiner’s lyrics (often based on his own experiences).
Now, Schuldiner needs our help to make it through the toughest time of his life. To help pay for his medical care, two charity online auctions offering autographed musical instruments, rare CDs, vinyl, posters, T-shirts, original album artwork and more from bands including Fear Factory, Staind, Korn, Macabre and Morbid Angel are running through the end of June at ebay.com and allbeat.com. Visit hammerheartamerica.com/makeadifference.html for direct links to all current auction items.
Donations, by check or money order payable to “Charles Schuldiner Medical Fund” can also be sent to Hammerheart America, PO Box 42323, Pittsburgh, PA 15203, or directly wired to the Charles Schuldiner Medical Fund, Washington Mutual Bank, 500 E. Alta Dr., Altamonte Springs, FL 32701 (bank routing number 321180748, account number 3513564696).
Letters and e-mails for Schuldiner are welcome as well. Abril states, “We’re asking fans to write about how Chuck and his music have impacted their life, without mention of the auctions or recent turn of events. Already, we have passed on over 300 letters to Chuck and his family. We ask that people please keep writing, in order to keep Chuck’s spirits high, which is as crucial for him to win this battle as any medical treatment he receives.”
Hammerheart America can be contacted at 412-390-4088 or firstname.lastname@example.org.MT editorial assistant Nicole Jones contributed to The Hot & the Bothered, which is edited by MT arts editor George Tysh