Austrian media reports that Udo Jürgens, Austria’s first ever Eurovision winner, died earlier today.

The sad news comes just months after the music legend celebrated his 80th birthday. Naturally, he was tipped to be a part of the 2015 Eurovision show in some way or another.

Udo Jürgens, who was not known to be ill, was touring in Switzerland. According to press reports, he collapsed while walking and lost consciousness. Despite doctors’ efforts to ressuscitate him, the singer did not regain consciousness and died at a hospital in Münsterlingen. The hospital later issued a press release saying that Udo Jürgens died of heart failure at 4:25 p.m.

Udo Jürgens won the Eurovision Song Contest for Austria back in 1966, with the song “Merci, Chérie” (“Thanks, Darling”).

Adieu, adieu, adieu, Mr. Jürgens.

Conchita reacts

Fellow Austrian Conchita Wurst, this year’s Eurovision winner, took to Facebook to commemorate Udo.

Udo, I am deeply sad that you left us today. 50 years ago, you represented our country at the Eurovision Song Contest in Copenhagen, and two years later you were bringing it to Vienna. I want to tell you that it would have been a great honour to me to share the Eurovision stage with you at its 60th anniversary. You were a great artist – Merci!

Photo: heise.de

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Fatima
Fatima
6 years ago

joey
It would be cool if Conchita will sing Merci Cherie (at least in honor or Üdo)…

That is a brilliant idea joey

Charles
Charles
6 years ago

For once we can all pay our sincere respect towards a real artist with a solid career built on music and not on “red-carpet-focus-on-me-sausage-moments”

RIP Üdo Jürgen and say hi to Joe Cocker for me … two legends already in heaven.

Kjetil
Kjetil
6 years ago

RIP Udo!
We will miss you!
I’m sure you’d have a big role in ESC 2015 but now you can build bridges up there!
BTW: Joey, great idea! I imagine how the full hall sings with her:
Merci Cheri
Vielen Dank für die Blumen 😀
Mit 66 Jahren
Griechischer Wein
Aber bitte mit Sahne
Warum nur Warum
Sag ihr, ich lass sie grüßen

davved
davved
6 years ago

RIP

Anita
Anita
6 years ago

Udo, we miss you . ..It was good knowing you through your music, that was released through your God given talent. May angels carry you to your everlasting rest, and may the music play on !

Esclover_ireland
Esclover_ireland
6 years ago

R.I.P.Heaven gained an angel today

Erin
Erin
6 years ago

Udo Jurgens just recently released an album called ‘Right in the Middle of Life’ which reflects how he thrived with exuberance and generosity. While the circumstances and the timing of his passing away during this season of peace and goodwill seem like a cruel irony, we should remind ourselves that a life well loved is a life well lived!
http://www.dw.de/austrian-composer-and-singer-udo-j%C3%BCrgens-dies-aged-80/a-18145077

Melissa Kutcher
Melissa Kutcher
6 years ago

Merci Udo.

Daniel
Daniel
6 years ago

Rest in peace Üdo, and merci.

Oostenrijk
Oostenrijk
6 years ago

Merci génie!

Toby
Toby
6 years ago

Arguably one of Eurovision’s biggest successes after ABBA and Celine Dion. He sold over 100 million records during his career and had his songs covered by Shirley Bassey and Sammy Davis Jr. Sad to see him go 🙁

Judith
Judith
6 years ago

@Joey: Fantastic idea. Rest in Peace Udo.

AGA
AGA
6 years ago

R.I.P

Alex
Alex
6 years ago

R.I.P. 🙁

joey
joey
6 years ago

It would be cool if Conchita will sing Merci Cherie (at least in honor or Üdo)…