Carly Simon in mourning after the death of her two sisters a day apart from cancer

Carly Simon is mourning the death of her two older sisters, Lucy and Joanna Simon, who died a day apart after both battling cancer.

The eldest of the Simon sisters, Joanna Simon – who was a famous opera singer and Emmy-winning TV correspondent – died of thyroid cancer on Wednesday at age 85, according to Carly Simon’s manager Larry Ciancia. Lucy Simon, who composed the Broadway musical « The Secret Garden, » died Thursday at age 82 after battling breast cancer, Ciancia also confirmed.

“Their loss will be long and haunting. As sad as this day is, it is impossible to mourn them without celebrating their incredible lives,” Carly Simon said in a statement obtained by USA TODAY on Saturday.

“We were three sisters who not only took turns blazing trails and laying out courses for each other, we were (for each other) secret parts. The co-custodians of each other’s memories.

The siblings were born to publishing giant Richard Simon of Simon & Schuster and his wife, Andrea. Their brother Peter, a photographer, died aged 71 from cancer in 2018.

« I have no words to explain the feeling of suddenly being the only remaining direct offspring of Richard and Andrea Simon, » the « You’re So Vain » singer continued. « They touched everyone they knew and those of us they left behind will be lucky and honored to carry on their memories. »

Joanna rose to fame in the world of opera and as a concert performer in the 1960s. She was a frequent guest on television talk shows. After retiring from singing, she became an arts correspondent for PBS’s « MacNeil-Lehrer News Hour, » where she won an Emmy in 1991 for reporting on mental illness and creativity.

Simon’s older sister was married to novelist and journalist Gerald Walker from 1976 until his death in 2004 and was Walter Cronkite’s girlfriend from 2005 until his death in 2009.

Carly and Lucy previously performed together as the Simon Sisters, opening for other acts at folk clubs in Greenwich Village.

After getting married and having children, Lucy Simon recorded two solo albums, « Lucy Simon » (1975) and « Stolen Time » (1977), for RCA. Lucy and her husband, David Levine, produced two Grammy-winning children’s albums, « In Harmony » (1981) and « In Harmony 2 » (1983).

Members of the Broadway community, including actors Steven Pasquale, Jessica Vosk and Sierra Boggess, wrote messages of condolence.

« RIP, Lucy Simon. So sad to hear this news. A great woman and writer. This Secret Garden score goes straight to the pantheon, » Pasquale wrote on Twitter.

« The Secret Garden was the first show I saw on Broadway. It remains my favorite score. It was there that I fell in love with Rebecca Luker. And it’s all thanks to the brilliant musical mind of Lucy Simon. You go a lot we miss it,” Vosk wrote.

“His music is his gift to the world. In one of her last messages, she said ‘I was going to ask you to carry my voice’ and I sat down and cried, » Boggess wrote on Instagram.


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