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Rico Puno dead: Tributes pour in for legendary singer as cause of death revealed

Rico Puno
Rico Puno, pictured on one of his album covers, has passed away. Pic credit: Canary Records

Legendary Filipino musician Rico Puno has died at the age of 65. The  singer — who was also a comedian, actor and television host — passed away due to cardiac arrest on Tuesday morning this week.

His sister-in-law, Anna Puno, revealed his death in an Instagram post and his daughter Tosca Camille Puno-Ramos later confirmed that the news was true.

Rico Puno had struggled with heart issues before. Back in 2015, he had a triple-bypass heart surgery. He also underwent an angioplasty last December 2017 and recently got a new pacemaker.

Rico Puno died at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Taguig City. His manager issued a statement revealing that Rico Puno had attended hospital this past Sunday for a regular checkup, but was told he needed to be confined for further observation and he died two days later.

View this post on Instagram

I am seized with deep emotional shock when I found out that our OPM King – Kuya Rico J. Puno has passed away this morning (manila time). Numbed with grief, I would like to call on all entertainers in the OPM Industry as well as his worldwide fans to stop for a moment and say a prayer to one of the most respected singers in the country. I cannot help but say it was serendipitous that Starmedia prepared a solo 40th Anniversary concert for him and a US tour with the OPM stalwarts and colleagues just recently. Little did I know that this is his Final Bow in the live entertainment world. We will forever miss the TOTAL ENTERTAINER…but his songs will forever cherish in our hearts.

A post shared by Anna Puno (@annapuno) on

Rico Puno is a legend of OPM — Original Pilipino Music — and is credited with putting the country on the map when it comes to music.

He was seen as a pop star, and started out channeling American superstars and covering American hits — including Barbra Streisand’s The Way We Were and Marvin Gaye’s Baby I’m For Real.

His performance and singing skills resulted in him leading the Manila Sound, a musical genre in the Philippines that began in the mid-1970s in the country.

Fans, including many famous faces, have rushed to pay tribute to him on social media.

Puno had a high profile in the Philippines. His career included being a spokesperson for San Miguel beer, the host of Lunch Date, a television variety show, and an actor on the sitcom, Home Sweetie Home.

He was also involved in local politics, representing Makati City in the Manila area from 1998 to 2007. He was re-elected in 2016 after losing in 2010 during a vice mayor race. He had plans of running again next year, despite his heart issues.

Rico Puno was born Enrico De Jesus Puno on Feb. 13, 1953, and grew up in Manila. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration, but pursued music after he failed to find a job after graduation.

Rico Puno was 65 years old at the time of his death.


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