Eagles guitarist and founder Glenn Frey is dead at the age of 67, due to a combination of rheumatoid arthritis, ulcerative colitis, and pneumonia. I suspect he took immunosuppressants for both the RA and the UC, resulting in an inability to fight what the news is calling “an especially virulent strain of pneumonia.”

Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, by themselves, usually do not result in death. However, complications arising from them can, and do. This is especially true when patients are given an arsenal of drugs, which also have serious side effects.

This loss is a sobering reminder of just how terrible chronic inflammatory bowel disease is. Perhaps this will increase awareness. Perhaps deaths like this will quell ignorant and insensitive comments, like ones I have personally heard.

“You don’t look sick.”

“There’s a cure for that!”

“Don’t you just have to shit a lot?”

“It’s just diarrhea.”

And my personal favorite:

“I take Pepto-Bismol.”

If I knew I was going to die at the age of 67, which is only 19 years away, I would do exactly what I am doing right now. More than ever I am thankful and grateful for this new way of living!

RIP, Glenn Frey.