Michael Bloodgood, a heavyweight in the world of Christian rock, has died according to reports from his band.
Michael died at 8:15 a.m. CDT on Friday, July 29, 2022, according to a Facebook post from his beloved band, Bloodgood.
"After a gallant fight that began with a severe hemorrhagic stroke in February 2022 he's gone home to be with our Heavenly Father," the band says.
Michael suffered a hemorrhagic stroke and subsequent brain bleed on February 21, while over 2,000 miles from his home. He was airlifted to hospital at that time and never fully recovered.
"We'll cherish Michael's generous spirit, off-beat sense of humour, and musical soul. His devotion to the Lord and sharing of the Gospel through his ministry as a pastor and musician touched countless lives," Bloodgood says about its founding member.
The band was one of the biggest names in Chrisitan heavy metal in the 1980s. Their image drew criticism from some Christians who didn't appreciate the band's sound or fashion. Michael, however, never shied that the only reason for forming the band was to proclaim the name of Jesus and witness to heavy metal music fans.
"My musical direction took quite a different route halfway through my senior year in high school when I gave my life to Christ," Michael writes in his website's biography. "Suddenly, all I wanted to do was to share my new life and spread the Gospel using rock 'n roll music, so the following year I started my first Christian band, Crossroads. There was very little contemporary Christian rock in those days that we were aware of, so we began rearranging old hymns by putting in rock guitar hooks, doing cover songs like 'Jesus Is Just Alright.' We played anywhere and everywhere we could, including parks, Christian coffee bars around Southern California and making our way down to the Naval Training Center in San Diego to share our faith with the sailors-in-training. The first time we played in a church, some folks walked out before we began when they spotted my electric guitar, considering it a 'tool of the devil!'"
In a winter 1986 issue of Vortexx Michael explained that there was a large heavy metal music scene in his native Seattle, and he "felt a need to represent Christ to that audience, and the band was the natural way to do so."
In May an online fundraiser for his medical bills reported that Michael had begun speaking and was communicating with doctors. However, after almost 160 days in hospital he succumbed to the effects of the stroke.
The band had been working on new material and were also touring at the time of his stroke.
Michael is survived by his wife of 46 years, Marilyn. They have three sons together.
In closing out the announcement, the band quoted 1 Timothy 4:8 which says, "For while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come."