- TICKET NEWS
Hundreds of Neil Diamond fans have donated their ticket refunds to Parkinson's disease research, after the Sweet Caroline singer announced he has been diagnosed with the condition.
The 77-year-old singer announced on Monday (22Jan18) that he is retiring and had cancelled the latest leg of his 50th anniversary tour, which was set to begin in New Zealand in March, on doctor's orders.
Those who had tickets to the gigs were refunded in full, but many chose not to keep the money and instead donate it to causes close to Diamond's heart.
The singer's wife and manager Katie took to Twitter on Tuesday to reveal how touched they were by the gesture, writing: "Wow, I’ve received a bunch of messages from people in Aus & NZ who are donating their ticket refunds to good causes: Parkinson’s research, animal rescue groups, fire victim funds, etc. My heart is so full of joy to see this silver lining. Faith in humanity = restored. Thank you!"
Diamond himself then retweeted his wife's message, adding: "This makes me smile. Thank you. Thank you to everyone for your outpouring of love and support. It makes a difference."
The music icon previously revealed his diagnosis in a statement on his website, in which he wrote that the onset of Parkinson’s disease had made it "difficult to travel and perform on a large scale basis but will allow Mr. Diamond to continue his writing, recording and development of new projects".
He added, "I plan to remain active in writing, recording and other projects for a long time to come."
"My thanks goes out to my loyal and devoted audiences around the world. You will always have my appreciation for your support and encouragement. The ride has been 'so good, so good, so good' thanks to you," he concluded, referencing the refrain from the chorus of Sweet Caroline.
Following his announcement, Diamond was flooded with messages of support from his peers, including Barry Manilow, who tweeted: "#Neil Diamond So, so sorry to hear about the great Neil Diamond’s illness. I’m rooting for you Neil! Fight on from another Brooklyn boy!"
Beach Boys star Brian Wilson wrote, "I’m sorry to hear about Neil Diamond’s Parkinsons diagnosis. Neil, I wish you all the best, buddy", while Reba McEntire shared a picture of the singer on Instagram, alongside the caption: "Thank you Neil Diamond for 50 wonderful years of your great music, amazing personality and love for your audience. Keep up the good fight, we love you! @neildiamond."