Actress and pop music's Olivia Newton-John has died this morning. The 73-year-old has "passed away peacefully" at her ranch in southern California surrounded by family and friends.
On her official Facebook page, husband John Easterling described Newton-John as a "symbol of triumphs and hope for over 30 years sharing her journey with breast cancer." He continues,"Her healing inspiration and pioneering experience with plant medicine continues with the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund, dedicated to researching plant medicine and cancer. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that any donations be made in her memory to the Olivia Newton-John Foundation Fund."
Newton-John was a four-time Grammy Award winner whose music career included five number one hits and another ten Top Ten hits on the Billboard Hot 100, and two Billboard 200 number one albums, If You Love Me, Let Me Know (1974) and Have You Never Been Mellow (1975). Eleven of her singles (including two Platinum) and 14 of her albums (including two Platinum and four 2× Platinum) have been certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). With global sales of more than 100 million records, Newton-John is one of the best-selling music artists from the second half of the 20th century to the present.
In May 2017, it was announced that Newton-John's breast cancer had returned and metastasized to her lower back. Her back pains had initially been misdiagnosed as sciatica. Newton-John subsequently revealed this was actually her third bout with breast cancer, as she had privately battled a recurrence of the disease in 2013 in addition to her initial 1992 fight.
Newton-John remained optimistic throughout her cancer battle, using her own experience to help launch the Olivia Newton-John Cancer and Wellness Centre in Melbourne and raise hundreds of millions of dollars in the fight against the disease.
Over the years, the star explained that she preferred to be called a cancer "thriver" than a cancer "survivor."
In 2006, Newton-John released Grace and Gratitude, which contains inspirational songs influenced by many faith traditions. Her passion for health and wellness has inspired her to open a spa and write a cookbook.