Motown singer Jimmy Ruffin dies aged 78

Thursday November 20, 2014

Jimmy Ruffin has passed away aged 78.

The news of his death follows reports last month that he was seriously ill and in intensive care in a Las Vegas hospital. 

The children of the late singer, Philicia Ruffin and Jimmy Lee Ruffin Jr, confirmed that their father had passed away on Monday 17 November.

Philicia led tributes to her father on behalf of her family, and called him "a rare type of man who left his mark on the music industry".

The father-of-two was born on 7 May, 1936, in Collinsville, Mississippi and rose to fame with hits including What Becomes of the Brokenhearted and I've Passed This Way Before.

He moved to the UK in the 1980s, where he recorded songs with Paul Weller and Heaven 17.

Following the death his younger brother David, one of the early members of the Temptations, in 1991 of a drug overdose, Jimmy became an active anti-drug campaigner.

Admirers of the Motown icon paid their respects on Twitter, among them Boy George who called Jimmy a 'great soul'.

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