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Gloria Estefan pays tribute to beloved tour bus driver who died of COVID-19

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Lars Niki/Getty Images for New York Women in Film & Television

Gloria Estefan, who recently revealed that she’d contracted COVID-19 but has since recovered, has posted a moving tribute to a dear friend who passed away from the virus.

On Instagram, Gloria wrote, “Ron (Bear) Jones was one of the sweetest, most loving humans that I’ve had the privilege to know. He was my favorite tour bus driver and was driving us on March 20, 1990 when we had a horrific accident while on the Cuts Both Ways tour.”

She continues, “He rode in the ambulance with me to the hospital holding my hand even though he was severely injured himself. He drove us on every tour after that including my final world tour in 2004.”

“He lost his life yesterday to Covid,” Gloria added about Jones. “May he rest in peace in the knowledge that he was well loved & respected and we will miss him a lot on this earth. My sincerest condolences to his family and all who loved him.”

As Gloria’s fans know, during the Cuts Both Ways tour, a truck crashed into her tour bus during a snowstorm. She suffered a fractured spine and now has two titanium rods in her spinal column.  After a year of intensive physical therapy, she returned to the stage 10 months after the accident.

Legendary rocker Peter Frampton also paid tribute to Jones, tweeting, “Thank you @GloriaEstefan I echo your kind words about our dear friend Bear Jones he was our favourite driver too. A very special, warm & caring person. He will be missed by so many. Much love Bear, Your “little buddy” Peter RIP.”


By Andrea Dresdale
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