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 Terry Alan Kath

Terry Alan Kath

Birth
Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, USA
Death 23 Jan 1978 (aged 31)
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Burial Glendale, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Plot Garden of Remembrance section, Map #E15, Distinguished Memorial – Semi-Private Garden 40
Memorial ID 6681 · View Source
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Musician. Born the son of Raymond and Evelyn Kath in Chicago, Illinois; as a child he played the drums, the banjo, and finally taught himself to play the guitar. As a teenager, he formed a group to cover such bands as the Ventures. While attending De Paul University in 1966, Kath formed The Big Thing with Walt Paradaizer and Danny Seraphine. Within a year the lineup also included trombonist James Pankow, trumpet player Lee Loughnane, keyboardist Robert Lamm, and bassist Peter Cetera and became the Chicago Transit Authority. The band would become the opening act for Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin. Hendrix was reported to have said Kath was the better guitarist. In 1968, the band signed with Columbia Records and began recording; releasing their debut album, ‘Chicago Transit Authority' in 1969. ‘Chicago II' was released in March, 1970 and topped out at #4 on the American charts. The following year, ‘Chicago III' climbed one slot. In 1971 they released the massive ‘Chicago at Carnegie Hall' which remains the best selling four LP set ever recorded. The album a year formula continued with ‘Chicago V' in 1972, their first effort that was under one hour in length. ‘Chicago VI' came out in 1973, topping the charts. The following year, Kath married Camelia Ortiz with whom he had one daughter. He had developed an interest in guns and had numerous weapons in his home and often on his person. It was not unusual for him to go target practice or hunting while off the road. ‘Chicago VII,' ‘Chicago VIII,' and ‘Chicago IX' released between 1974 and 1977 all reached the top slot on American charts; and Kath began work on a solo album. On January 23, 1978 at a party at roadie Donnie Johnson's home in Los Angeles, Kath was drinking heavily and showing off one of his automatic pistols. He was asked to put it away. He ejected the magazine to show that the weapon was unloaded. He returned the clip and placed the barrel against his temple. Reassuring everyone that it wasn't loaded, Kath pulled the trigger. The chambered round that he neglected to unload killed him instantly. The Los Angeles County coroner ruled the death an accidental gunshot inflicted under the influence of alcohol and drugs. In 1997, Chicago compiled an album that showcased Kath's best performances.

Bio by: Iola


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Inscription

COMPOSER-GUITARIST-SINGER
THE "MEMORIES OF LOVE" HE LEFT ON EARTH, ALL THE WORLD HAS SHARED. RARE AND GIFTED, GENTLE MAN WHOSE RICHES WERE OUR SYMPHONY OF SONGS FOR YOUNG AND OLD BECAUSE HE CARED.
OUR LOVED ONE


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 17 Oct 1999
  • Find A Grave Memorial 6681
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Terry Alan Kath (31 Jan 1946–23 Jan 1978), Find A Grave Memorial no. 6681, citing Forest Lawn Memorial Park (Glendale), Glendale, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .