Former Megadeth Drummer Lee Rauch Passed Away At 58
via Metal Addicts / Youtube
The former drummer of Megadeth, Lee Rauch, has passed away at the age of 58.
His brother, Chris, confirmed the drummer’s death on social media. The post reads:
“Today is a very sad day, we lost my brother William Lee Rauch.
“Lee was a very strong man of faith so I know he is with God now. He was an awesome drummer, who helped launch one of the biggest metal names in history by being the first drummer for Megadeth, playing alongside Dave Mustaine, Kerry King and David Ellefson. His heart was set on making it big and came very close numerous times. Lee was a very loving and giving individual who was extremely hard-working, he continued to play drums later in his life for the church which made him happy. He was a loving son and a very honorable man.”
“Most of all, he was my brother and though I didn’t always keep in touch the way I should have, I loved him very much and he will be greatly missed to my core. I love you brother, good journey. Hope you enjoy that setup they’ve got up there for you bro, bet its not as big as your blue set was though, lol.”
In 1983, Rauch joined Megadeth’s singer and founder Dave Mustaine and bassist David Ellefson. Together, the early lineup of the band recorded their first demo titled Last Rites which was released in 1984 and included three songs: “Last Rites/Loved to Deth,” “The Skull Beneath the Skin” and “Mechanix.”
Later on, guitarist Kerry King left Slayer for a while and joined Megadeth. Their first official gig took place on Feb. 17 1984 in Berkeley, California which featured Mustaine, Ellefson, King, and Rauch.
At the end of ’84, Rauch departed from Megadeth and was replaced by Gar Samuelson, who played on the band’s first two studio albums.
Rauch then continued to play in several thrash metal bands based in California until 1987. He contributed to Dark Angel’s live shows but never recorded material with them and was out of the group by 1985.