Tragedy of Van Morrison”s love child as he dies aged 13 months
The child fathered by Irish rock star Van Morrison with his late American lover has died aged just 13 months.
The musician had the boy, George Ivan Morrison III, with Gigi Lee. Last week it was revealed that Ms Lee had died of cancer in October, aged 44.
Now it has been disclosed that George – known as ‘Little Van’ – died 11 months ago.
Lovers: Van with Gigi in November 2009, a month before she gave birth
The news has shocked friends of Ms Lee, who are already trying to come to terms with her death after a long battle with throat cancer.
Carla Higdon, 46, said: ‘It is so incredibly sad. I am devastated.’
Ms Lee died at a hospice in Belfast after moving to Northern Ireland to be close to Little Van’s father, who lives in Dublin with his wife Michelle Rocca.
The intensely private Mr Morrison, known for hits such as Brown Eyed Girl, attempted to keep his relationship with Ms Lee secret.
He issued a series of court orders to try to prevent the press mentioning the existence of the child.
Ms Lee gave birth to Little Van in December 2009 and arranged to have a statement announcing it appear on Mr Morrison’s official website just after Christmas.
Loss: The baby with his mother Gigi Lee (in hat) in October 2010
The message was quickly removed after the singer branded it a hoax and denied ever meeting Ms Lee. But it was later revealed she had been made a director of 14 of his companies in the months before she give birth to Little Van.
Ms Lee, the daughter of a businessman, was dating a Fleetwood Mac roadie and working as an office manager when she first met Mr Morrison in 1998.
According to friends, Ms Lee was diagnosed with cancer two months before her son was born.
Ms Higdon said: ‘She pulled back her hair and showed me a lump in her neck. It was huge. It was like the skin around it had caved in.
‘They told her that the tumour had wound itself around her carotid artery and if they tried to remove it, her face would be paralysed and her speech would be impaired.
‘She was in great pain and was very shaken. She was afraid most of all for the baby.’
But Ms Higdon said the doctors told Ms Lee she could have radiation treatment after the baby was born. The child’s sudden death came ‘as a total shock’, according to a British acquaintance of Ms Lee.