Ronnie James Dio’s widow Wendy gave Rob Halford a very special gift backstage at Judas Priest’s show in Los Angeles on Sunday night (22nd April).
Wendy took to Ronnie’s social media channels yesterday to post a picture of herself and Rob at the Microsoft Theater holding a ring that she purchased for Ronnie when he replaced Ozzy Osbourne in Black Sabbath in 1979.
She captioned the image: “This was a ring I bought Ronnie when he first joined Black Sabbath, it has a cross on it. Rob was such a good friend of Ronnie's I thought he should have it. We had a great time at the show.”
This was a ring I bought Ronnie when he first joined Black Sabbath, it has a cross on it. Rob was such a good friend of Ronnie's I thought he should have it.— Official Dio (@OfficialRJDio) April 23, 2018
We had a great time at the show.
- Wendy Dio
Photo by Rene Ruston pic.twitter.com/1JMjzWKfJK
Speaking about his late “and very dear friend” in 2014, Rob Halford told Loudwire: “I've always said the first thing I remember about Ronnie was the approachable side of him. Some people in rock 'n' roll can be a bit difficult and Ronnie was always approachable.
“You could speak to Ronnie about anything at any time, and I'm not just talking about being a musician, I'm talking about the fans. The fans were the life force for Ronnie James Dio. He loved his fans with a passion and it was a genuine, genuine thing.
“So whenever I was with Ronnie there was always that was going on around him. He was rarely alone cause he was always talking to a fan or signing an autograph or what may be and that's just one of the small components of Ronnie James Dio that makes him such a legend.”
He also told OC Weekly in 2015 that he listens to Ronnie’s music before almost every Judas Priest show, saying: “I find (Ronnie’s) voice so inspiring and so powerful for me as a singer. I always listen to Ronnie before I go on stage with Priest because I find his voice invigorating.
“It gets my blood pumping and gets me in the zone before I go out and do my thing with Priest. I pretty much listen to him almost every time."
Judas Priest announced a blockbuster co-headline North American tour with Deep Purple yesterday taking in 25 arenas throughout August and September.
Their sole headline UK show takes place on the Ronnie James Dio Stage at Bloodstock Open Air Festival on Friday 10th August. Tickets are on sale right here.