Updated 07:42 AM EST, Mon, Jan 25, 2021

José 'Cheo' Feliciano Dies in Car Crash in Puerto Rico

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Salsa singer José 'Cheo' Feliciano was a cancer survivor, but he died in a car accident this morning.

The 78-year-old was looking much better when he performed at the Premios Los Nuestro awards earlier in the year. Unfortunately, he crashed into a concrete pole around 4:13 a.m. and died at the scene, according to police.

"It seems he lost control on a curve that he was taking and he hit the pole," police said. "Unfortunately, we're talking about our Cheo Feliciano."

His son, José Enrique Feliciano, arrived at the scene and appeared very distraught. He chose to speak about his father's life.

"Daddy is for life because he has left us his music, his heart, his town, his people..." he said. "'Family' as daddy said. Thank God that we have his music to remember him by."

Cheo's son said that perhaps his father fell asleep at the wheel. He also explained that because of his sickness it was difficult for him to drive. He didn't have much mobility in one of his arms.

His father would have been heading to Acapulco, Mexico on Friday for a performance alongside a group of artists for Salsa Giants. As it stands, the event will still take place.

The governor of Puerto Rico declared three days of mourning, according to AP News.

Cheo's wife said that he had been at the casino on Wednesday night.

"He was the only man in my life," Socorro "Coco" Prieto Leon said. "I thank everyone for the love they had for him."

Feliciano and his family moved to New York when he was a teenager, and he joined a local band as a percussionist. In 1957, he got married and gave his first concert with the Joe Cuba band.

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