Violinist Robby Steinhardt, original member of band Kansas, dead at 71

A rock violinist, singer and original member of the group Kansas has died at age 71.

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According to The Associated Press, Robby Steinhardt died about 6:30 p.m. Saturday at a Florida hospital, where he was being treated for pancreatitis complications, wife Cindy Steinhardt said in a Facebook post Monday.

“It is with an extremely heavy broken heart that I have to announce to the world, we have lost one of the most incredible people of our time. … Robby Steinhardt has passed away,” she wrote of the Lawrence, Kansas, native, who was with the band from 1973-1982 and 1997-2006.

Cindy Steinhardt said her husband was first admitted to the hospital on May 13. He died in her arms, she wrote.

It is with an extremely heavy broken heart that I have to announce to the world, we have lost one of the most incredible...

Posted by Cindy Steinhardt on Monday, July 19, 2021

“We are beyond devastated as our lives were about to start a new adventure,” she wrote. “Robby just recorded his first solo album with the talented music producer Michael Franklin at Solar Studios. A tour to start in August, Robby was so looking forward to being back on stage doing what he loved.”

She went on to ask fans to “respect this heavy time of grief.”

The band, known for its hits “Carry on Wayward Son” and “Dust in the Wind,” also offered condolences in a Facebook post Monday.

“The members of the band Kansas, past and present, wish to express our deepest sorrow over the death of our bandmate and friend, Robby Steinhardt,” the post read. “Robby will always be in our souls, in our minds, and in our music. What he brought to us as bandmates, to the fans who attended our concerts, and to the sound of KANSAS, will always be heartfelt. We love him and will miss him always.”

The members of the band KANSAS, past and present, wish to express our deepest sorrow over the death of our bandmate and...

Posted by Kansas on Monday, July 19, 2021

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The Associated Press contributed to this report.