Tommy Debarge Dies At 64

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2010 Black And White Benefactrix Ball
2010 Black And White Benefactrix Ball

Source: Maury Phillips / Getty

Tommy Debarge, known for being in the 70’s group Switch, has died.

According to TMZ, Debarge died on Oct. 21 at the age of 64. Debarge’s family said he had battled with kidney and liver failure for many years. A few weeks ago, his health declined and he had to be hospitalized. His daughter, Marina Debarge, told TMZ that her father had also battled COVID-19 earlier this year but didn’t complain of any complications during his diagnosis.

In a Facebook post, his mother Etterlene Debarge kept her post about his death short and shared a photo of Debarge with his guitar against a background of the sky.

“Tommy has gained his wings,” she captioned the photo.

Tommy Debarge along with his brother Bobby founded the group Switch in 1976 after Bobby Debarge left the group White Heat. The group, which also included Phillip Ingram, Eddie Fullen, Gregory Williams and Jody Sims, birth three tracks while signed to Motown Records that hit the top 10 on the Billboard R&B Chart including “There’ll Never Be” in 1978, “I Call Your Name” in 1979 and “Love Over and Over Again” in 1981. Bobby and Tommy Debarge then left Switch after they released their album Switch V, and the group left Motown and signed to Total Experience/RCA .

In 2012, Debarge released an autobiography titled There’ll Never Be: A Story of Forgiveness.

“A prideful turning away from God’s principles changed his dreams into a nightmare. Poverty and addiction were in the pot at the end of his rainbow. Now, Thomas is a man recovering from the decisions he made,” the book’s synopsis stated. “He learned, through the process of people entering and exiting his heart at various stages of growth, that the road of sobriety was one he had to walk alone; just him and God.”

MADAMENOIRE sends our condolences to the Debarge family.